The Facebook Craze Is Skipping Japan

The New York Times has addressed Mark Zuckerberg's apparent global domination in an article called "Facebook Wins Relatively Few Friends in Japan," which points out that Facebook has actually failed to win Japan. Although Goldman Sachs just valued the company at $50 billion dollars, the Japanese have no intention to "like it" anytime soon. The Times reports, "Facebook users in Japan number fewer than two million, or less than 2 percent of the country's online population."

So why are Americans so addicted to the social network while Japanese users stay on other sites like Mixi? Facebook's openness seems to be throwing the Japanese for a loop. Most importantly, they don't trust Zuckerberg with their personal data.

The Times points out, "In a survey of 2,130 Japanese mobile Web users by the Tokyo-based MMD Laboratory, 89 percent of respondents said they were reluctant to disclose their real names on the Web." In America, one of the only things we try to keep sacred online is our social security number (and that gets out sometimes, too).

If Facebook truly wants a global empire, they're going to have to make a dent in the Japanese market. We thought we'd help Zuck out and come up with some ideas for the Japanese Facebook team:

  • Replace the blue color-scheme with something a little more "iconic." This looks way better.
  • Integrate Pachinko, the highly addictive arcade game, into all profiles.
  • Flip the 5 picture gallery next to all profile pictures vertically so it looks like a photo booth.
  • How does a sushi-themed version of Farmville sound? Horrible? Okay, sorry.

If none of these work, Facebook should send American celebrities over to Japan in their behalf. C'mon! Look how well Arnold Schwarzenegger sells things there:


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