So it is said: Facebook, with its huge data about their users (and non-users) knows more about ourselves than we do.It’s not just that they know our private lives but, in the end they also know far more of our character traits than we do ourselves. This could become a recognized metric in getting employment or entering a college of one’s choice! If they aggregate data, they can deduce when we are first interested in something and when it develops into a habit or necessity and results in a purchase!
But there is a problem with that. Facebook is about profit: they live because their users buy the more expensive advertised products, spend fortunes on online games, etc... running huge debts if needs be. Yet, some people are more resistant to that manipulation than others. Some people never clic on advertisements. Some people do not buy high-margin products and look for the unadvertised alternative. Some people stop spending before they go into debt.
Presumably, Facebook (and google) can tell these people apart. It is their stated objective.
How long will it be before they decide that these users are not bringing in the profits they want and end the show for them? They will not necessarily exclude them, but they could make them pay or find ways to lower the level of service. How long do you think it will take?
Coming back to photography, we see interesting developments. It used to be that Adobe's customers were divided into two groups: the higher spenders who bought every upgrade and the lower spenders who bought every second upgrade. You know how it ended: today Adobe's product are to be paid by the month. For cameras: it used to be that one bought a camera and that was it. Gopro has introduced a new concept: you need to log-in to their web site to use the app for their cameras. You're not yet forced to subscribe to their cloud service, but how long will that take?
How much revenue growth does the average investor demand nowadays? One can only get that money from growth of user base or, when the market is saturated, by increasing the average revenue per user.