Reconsider Facebook's Value

(a Mercury-retrograde musing)

When Mark Zuckerberg launched the initial public offering of Facebook stock, it immediately took a plunge (astrologers will recall that he did this on a Venus station to retrograde, and Venus rules values), and many of us weren’t too surprised.

After all, how exactly does FB generate revenue? Those little adds are annoying, but easy enough to ignore, although it is a bit trickier now that they show up in your news feed. And those of us that have Pages can promote the page, spending somewhere in the neighborhood of $10 to $40 per promotion. Granted, there’s a lot of people and companies on FB, but it doesn’t seem to generate a whole lot of revenue per client.

Yet perhaps FB excels at generating what
Amit Goswami calls subtle capital, value that exists in the mental, emotional, and intuitive realms as well as the physical. This subtle capital wouldn’t show up on FB’s balance sheet, because it isn’t directly related to cash flow for FB or anyone else.

If you Like my FB Page (and you
should: click here), you may someday decide that you like what you see and so want to get an astrology consultation with me, buy a book, and so on (of course, you can do that right here on the website, too). If you Like the Page for one of the bands that I am in, you may decided to come see us play or buy download some music. But that’s not what I’m talking about.

What I am talking about is the enormous amount of quality content that is generated every hour - every minute - on Facebook. I know, some stuff is kind of trite, but most things make you stop and look. And when you look, you feel, you think, you experience. There’s a ton of great astrology out there. There’s interesting stuff about music, art, science, and social opportunities and challenges.

An artist friend of mine posts her pastel paintings for us to enjoy. She also creates impromptu Rorschach experiences with photos she takes, and we all share our impressions, feeding off each other’s visions. People share photos from all over the world, and stories, too.

Yes, moment-by-moment updates on the kids’ soccer game is a bit too much, but I’d rather know what’s important to my old high school friends than have no idea where in the world they are and what they are doing, which was the situation before FB.

It’s all one big unhosted cocktail party/professional conference/family reunion. And you don’t have to worry about whether people are mingling and enjoying themselves. Plus the clean-up is easy.

I think, to get back to my original point, that Facebook may in fact have truly staggering value as subtle capital. And I think that may be why so many people were quick to invest in something that has (to date) generated only modest monetary capital. It may even be pushing us to a point where we begin to recognize the value of Goswami’s subtle capital, and that could begin a realignment of our entire economic system.

Now, Linked-In... ? I got no idea what that's about.