Web 2.0 + Babyboomers + Soccer moms

February 15th, 2010

Recently, the site “ReadWriteWeb” published an article about Facebook becoming the One True Login (using your Facebook account to log into different services online). ReadWriteWeb itself incorporates Facebook connect. This article was ranked very high in Google, so that if you did a search for “Facebook login,” this article would appear next to links for Facebook.com.

So, what happens when you add old people and soccer moms into the mix?

Apparently, a lot of people still don’t understand how to read an address bar or manage their bookmarks. To access Facebook, they simply Google it and click the first link, not paying attention to the domain. It’s debatable whether they even know what a domain is. So when this article was ranked very high in Google searches, they clicked it when it appeared first. Then, because this site has a Facebook widget on the side, they thought they were actually LOGGING IN to Facebook. So imagine their frustration when they couldn’t navigate Facebook…because it was a completely different site. The poor dears had no idea.

Now commence the stream of comments rolling in from disgruntled grandmas and granddads:

Gladys Louis Davis: “Ok If I have to I will comment,I love facebook so right now just want to log in if thats ok with you..lol Keep up the good work…”

John Blair: “The new facebook sucks> NOW LET ME IN.”

Kathy: “When can we log in?”

Then people started getting desperate, wondering why Facebook had changed, and pleading to get it back the way it was — never once realizing THIS WASN’T FACEBOOK.


Ann Morgan: “I just want to log in…………”

M arvin Scott [sic]: “wtf is this bullshttttttttttt all about. can i get n plzzzzzzzzz”

Janet Pacholski Widner: “All I want to do is log in, this sucks!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1”

Dawn Norsby: “Can we log into face book? This is crazy I want to get all my info off and be done with this. I recently moved from MN to SC Myrtle Beach and facebook was a great way to keep in touch with family and friends but this is getting to be to difficult.”

Judy Graham: “HELP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

And on and on…

Since then, ReadWriteWeb had to post a qualifier at the beginning of the article:

Dear visitors from Google. This site is not Facebook. This is a website called ReadWriteWeb that reports on news about Facebook and other Internet services. You can however click here and become a Fan of ReadWriteWeb on Facebook, to receive our updates and learn more about the Internet. To access Facebook right now, click here. For future reference, type “facebook.com” into your browser address bar or enter “facebook” into Google and click on the first result. We recommend that you then save Facebook as a bookmark in your browser.

It’s an interesting debacle, albeit funny at the expense of these poor people. More and more older adult users are flocking to services aimed at younger, savvier demographics. Will there ever be Web 2.0 services that cater to the older demographics’ needs? And that can get them away from our Facebook (and similar) services? I really don’t think we can all exist in the same online ecosphere comfortably. I wouldn’t want to run into my mother at my favorite bar downtown; likewise, I don’t want her anywhere near my Facebook or Twitter feeds.

And obviously, problems arise that we could never even dream of…like a bunch of people thinking a site called ReadWriteWeb could in any way be Facebook. Sadly, many of the people who commented have no idea they were wrong to start with. They probably made it back to Facebook eventually, thought the “layout problems” were “fixed,” and wrote a thankful wall post, thinking Facebook admins would see it.

Also, why do thirteen year olds and their grandparents type the exact same way?


2 Responses to “Web 2.0 + Babyboomers + Soccer moms”

  1. Caitlin Murphy on February 15, 2010 9:23 pm

    I think this shows how completely and totally dependent so many people have become on Google. Should Google show something as one of the top hits for what they’re searching for, CLEARLY it must be correct. It has to be! It’s Google!

    In all honesty… it’s really kind of terrifying.

  2. Digital Storytelling » Blog Archive » Google Economics on April 17, 2010 5:47 pm

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