Facebook’s terrible year isn’t getting any better. The World’s biggest social network is now less popular than Reddit according to Alexa. Figures from Alexa reveal Reddit is now the third most popular website in the U.S. behind Google and YouTube. Alexa compiles its figures from a sample of Internet users who use desktop browsers like Firefox and Chrome.
The Downfall of a Giant
The Cambridge Analytica Scandal impacted as many as 87 million Facebook users. It resulted in users calling for a boycott of Facebook over the company’s data collection and advertising practices.
In response to the scandal, Facebook unveiled changes to make its site safer. Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation went into effect to help make the Internet a safer place for users.
Globally Facebook is still much bigger than Reddit. Facebook remains in the third position, while Reddit drops to sixth. But yet, the tides could be shifting.
However, as Facebook’s growth slows as it reaches saturation point in many markets, there are indications that in some countries the platform is losing users.
Facebook also has an aging population in the U.S., with data from eMarketer showing that Facebook lost about 2.8 million users under the age of 25 in the U.S. in 2017, with predictions for similar losses this year.
A Shaky Contender Emerges
Reddit itself has also been a subject of controversy. Created by founder Alexis Ohanian, the site merged with Aaron Swartz’s Infogami in 2006. In 2011, Swartz was charged with federal hacking laws for downloading millions of academic articles from a subscription service. Two years later, Swartz was found dead in his apartment by suicide.
Reddit has often been rebuked for its lax policy in regards to racism and hate speech. Speaking recently at the RightsCon conference in Toronto, co-founder and CEO Steve Huffman argued that “when you present a sanitized view of humanity you are undermining the authenticity of what you are doing.
In a separate incident, Reddit was also the home where the personal images of celebrities were uploaded following an Apple iCloud attack.
The US account for the biggest share of Reddit’s desktop traffic with over 40 percent of desktop traffic, followed by the UK and Canada.