Viral Facebook Question Thread Reminds Us of Social Media's Power
Facebook, in an attempt to copy everyone with a half-decent idea, has revamped/created a questions & answers feature similar to Quora. And it turns out, these can go seriously viral, too.
Heather Marie Hollingsworth, a Facebook user incapable of choosing just one first name, decided to do some spring cleaning on her friends list. After all, exclusivity is the key to true popularity. She posted a question saying “Cleaning out my friends list in the next few days…Do you wanna stay?” Users could respond “Yes, keep me,” “Don’t Care” and “No, not really.” Ballsy, HMH. Ballsy. (Note: HMH is your new nickname, Heather Marie. Learn it. Love it.)
Heather's friends' responses were published to their walls, and the friends of the respondents, confused and frightened, thought that the respondent was the one who actually made the poll. So they responded. And then their friends responded. And so on. If this was Wayne's World 2, we'd transition to an exponentially responding split screen right now.
4.11 MILLION people responded to the poll, with 3.98 responded "Yes, keep me." Turns out people really want their friends. Some of the responses were simply hysterical and desperate to not lose a friend. Even more surprisingly, the respondents weren't just frat dudes wanting to preserve their stalking rights to various girls that post pictures in scantily-clad clothing. "The Situation" was not involved.
We all question Facebook's long-term dominance sometimes, but this is a reminder of its power right now. Our question: is this an anomaly, or could other questions go viral on Facebook.