This article was published on January 25, 2012

Facebook is killing local social networks around the world

Facebook is killing local social networks around the world

Vincenzo Cosenza, an Italian digital strategist, who has shared his social media research with us in the past has just published a new edition of his World Map of Social Networks.

The map gives us a closer look at the global popularity of various social networks, and unsurprisingly, Facebook comes out at the top of the list. The social network has secured the number one spot in 127 countries out of the total 136 countries in the list.

The map offers a great visualization of Facebook’s dominance, throughout North and South America, most of Africa, Europe, Australia and part of Asia.

With over 800 million active users, a number that continues to grow, Facebook is continuing to make its away across the world map, taking the place of local offerings or other international competitors. In June 2011, Facebook surpassed Hyves, to become Holland’s most popular social network, while just this month, it edged Orkut out of its dominant position in Brazil. Facebook has also found itself outpacing Japan’s popular mobile social networks, Gree, Mobage and Mixi.

Europe is dominating the Facebook numbers, and has the most users out of any continent, with the number currently standing at 223 million, followed by North America at 219 million, and Asia and 202 million users.

Russia has shown a little bit more resistance than other countries to Facebook, with two local networks, V Kontakte and Odnoklassniki battling for social media users’ attention.

The number two and three spots in the social networking world vary from country to country. In Australia, Canada, Finland, Norway, Sweden, the UK and the US, Twitter and LinkedIn are playing catch up with Facebook, while Badoo is a popular choice in several European countries including Italy, Austria, Belgium and Spain. Orkut is now the number two choice in both Brazil and India.

Comparing this year’s figures with previous years, the number of dominant social networks has gone down from 16 in 2009, to 11 in 2010, leaving us with just 6 at the end of 2011.

World Map of Social Networks