Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Mark Cuban: Facebook is a 'time suck' and doesn't play fair

Mark Cuban continues to spar his way through the Billionaire Fight Club and —after mixing it up with Donald Trump for a few Twitter rounds — is now taking on the powers that be at Facebook.

Last week the Dallas Mavericks owner said the social network had "blown up" and made it hard for businesses by limiting their access to users' news feeds.  Now Cuban has called Facebook a "time suck" and is for people too anxious to "talk to the person next to you."

Cuban, who is urging marketers to take their business elsewhere after the social network started charging him to send messages to all the team's fans, took to his own personal blog, blog maverick, and wrote a roughly 1,700-word post arguing that Facebook is making it harder for marketers to reach their fans without paying for what they call "promoted posts."

To reach all the fans who like the Mavericks, the tech billionaire claims he has to pay $3,000 for every million reached.

Cuban criticized the social network as being a "time waster" and thus, should not bother filtering posts from from business owners like himself.

"In the past we put FB first, Twitter second," Cuban wrote on his blog.  "FB has been moved to the bottom of a longer list."

"FB doesn't seem to want to accept that its best purpose in life is a huge time suck platform that we use to keep up with friends, interests and stuff," he added.  "I think that they are over-thinking what their network is all about."

At the center of Cuban's wrath is whether Facebook should filter each person's pages or show them every post from every person and every brand they have followed.

Cuban's beef is with the fact that brands can pay for promoted posts to reach all their fans and said Facebook knows better than the users what they want to see.

"Isn't that why they liked or subscribed to a page," wrote Cuban.  "Do you fan a page with the expectation you might miss the one thing that you wanted to see?"

The Facebook news feed has been algorithmically favoring selected content since its launch in 2006 and — as any one of the billion people users knows — programmers are constantly tweaking the feed.  In September, Facebook began filtering pages more aggressively after there were complaints about spam.

"Being a time suck that people enjoy is a good thing," said Cuban.  "[But] who really appreciates that some posts rise to the top of their newsfeed because some folks they used to work with and are still friends with shared a baby picture."

Now if that picture was of Dirk Nowitzki he wouldn't complain.


  1. Zuckerberg was never cool. Facebook was cool, but its selling out quick, losing its edge and straying from what made it cool. Facebook is what it is and should have never been positioned to make anyone a billionaire.

  2. Facebook membership = automatic suspension from the Cool Kid Club.