Social Insanity

The latest rumor is that Yahoo has offered $1.6 billion to Mark Zuckerberg's social network Facebook and Zuckerberg has declined it. I don't know what's more insane -- Zuckerberg turning down $1.6 billion or Yahoo willing to pay $1.6 billion. The acquisition would get the ailing Yahoo it's own social network to counter Google's YouTube which also sold for $1.6 billion. Facebook is projected to earn $1 billion in revenue by 2015. But projections are meaningless in the fickle world of the next generation. And it's odd to see new age companies such as Yahoo acting in desperation like an old line media company such as Viacom. The only sure bet is to take the crazy money. Whether the next generation will remain in love with social networking in years to come is a fool's bet. It's very possible -- perhaps even likely -- that the dew will be off the lily by the time 2015 comes along. Right now Google is putting on a clinic to all media on how to develop out-of-the-box ideas. Copying them should not be one of them. There is a real question as to whether the commercialization of social sites like YouTube and News Corp's MySpace will drive quirky Gen Y'ers away. After all Gen Y is the anti-establishment. It would be better to follow Google's lead not in spending a fortune to acquire YouTube but spending a fortune to develop so many new and different Internet-based ideas.