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Should Social Networks Charge? Would You Pay?

Posted by on May 28, 2008

picture of social networksFirst off, my apologies for not posting in the last few days, I was quite ill with the flu. I am still not 100% but am feeling good enough to write, which is all the matters.

I am a fan of utilizing linkedin to ask questions to my network as I have found the I receive great feedback and thought provoking answers. The latest question I asked was as follows:

“Should Social Networks Charge? Would you Pay to Use Twitter/Linkedin/Facebook? How Much Would You Pay?”

I received several great responses from folks in various industries. Before you scroll onto the next page ask yourself the same question, should social networks charge? and would you pay if they did charge? Really think about this for a moment. Here are a few of the responses that I received…

Search Engine Marketer

“Social networking websites should not charge their users. These sites have a broad appeal because they are free and easy to use.”

President/CEO Co-Founder at eMarketing Association

“If facebook or Twitter had charged for their service I doubt they would be successful. Those networks are based on an advertising model, as are most. Charging for premium service would seem to be ok, but people expect basic services to be free.”

Manager at Accenture

“When you enter a bar/pub to meet new people or gather with your friends how much do you pay? Nothing. However you would probably order a beer or a sandwich, that’s how the bar owner makes money.

Social networks are the web 2.0 version of the old meeting places. Hence I see them evolving in the same ways, offering free entrance and paid premium services.”

Owner, SiteTruth

“Tribe tried to charge. They’re now down to two employees and sinking fast.”

Columnist/Writer/Keynote, Professional Broadcast Talent & Owner, RADIOELIZABETH

“if a social network asked for money to be a part of their platform, they would need to return something worth it in return.”

VP Business Development at Lions Bay Media Inc.

“Absolutely not; if FB charged a monthly fee I would simply stop using it. Linkedin however I would pay for as it is more of a business tool as oppossed to the social networking platform of FB. Now the fee would have to be nominal to be considered.”

These are a few of the responses that I received, you can visit the original linkedin question page to get the full list of responses. This linkedin question originally stemmed from a post I wrote on why I think social media networks should not charge. Please feel free to take a look at it and let me know what you think.

I would love to hear some more of your thoughts, should social networks charge? would you pay?

Thanks for reading!