Users Don’t “Like” Facebook — Satisfaction Scores Scrape Bottom with Airlines & Cable


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Facebook, what a success story. Over 500 million users, 55% of all social media visits, and 9% of all U.S. website visits (Google No. 2 at 7.4%).

With growth like that, users must be delighted, right?


Facebook, along with other social media web sites like MySpace, YouTube and Wikipedia, was recently added to ACSI’s customer satisfaction research. According to the recent report, Facebook scored 64 on the ACSI’s 100-point scale, in the bottom 5% of all companies–with perennial bottom dwellers like the airlines and cable companies. Ouch!

Why are Facebook users unhappy? Monopolistic behavior may be the culprit. Facebook has such a dominant position in the social media world that it can dictate to its users, who can’t easily leave all their friends and content behind.

What users like least about Facebook:

  • Privacy and security
  • technology that controls the news feeds
  • advertising
  • constant and unpredictable interface changes
  • spam
  • navigation troubles
  • annoying applications
  • functionality

Is Facebook too big to fail? Seems so right now, but it was only a few years ago that MySpace was the top dog in social media. When an alternative arrived (Facebook), users did switch and MySpace has been sinking ever since. MySpace’s scores were also abysmal.

So how is it that companies can succeed despite user satisfaction issues? Here’s a good explanation from the ACSI report, which points to the competitive environment:

Customers are willing to suffer through a poor experience in return for the benefits Facebook provides. This is a rare scenario in the American economy: usually customer satisfaction is intertwined with market success. The few exceptions to this rule (airlines, cable companies, and fast food) are operating in a sphere where there are no true standouts, so the bar is low.

But where is this competitor going to come from? Personally, I would prefer a social networking site run by Google or even Yahoo! But until Facebook gets more competition, and a more grown up leader than Zuckerberg, I expect we’ll see more of the same.

What do you think? Will Facebook’s user satisfaction woes eventually be its undoing? Or will it continue to grow and “succeed” anyway?

Further reading:


  1. I see this as evidence of the upcoming social media bust which I expect by 2012. I see this data as the forefront of a wave that signals heavy contraction of usage on all social media platforms that currently exist, and for one simple reason.

    You can only ride hype and hope for so long and then you have to add value for your customers. I have yet to see massive value added, independent of the simply “everyone is there” thing.

    The “fun” stuff gets boring, the spam gets old fast, and THEN WE see what this “thing” is good for, and many are going to find it’s not really good for much in their lives.

    The other force operating is a simple backlash of disappointment as people discover this revolutionary stuff isn’t revolutionary, and isn’t really better than the many other ways we can interact and in fact there are better ways.

    My take, anyway, but nobody believes me

    There’s a short “take” on this at


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