A study shows that if Facebook continues to grow at its current rate, it will have more dead profiles than life by the end of the century.
At the end of the first quarter of 2019, Facebook announced that it has 2.38 billion monthly active users.
In terms of the user base, Facebook is more popular than China and India, and could soon have more users than the two most populated countries combined.
However, a new study on Facebook says that the platform will have more dead by the end of the century. An article published last week by Carl öhman and David Watson, of the Internet Institute of the University of Oxford, predicts that the number of dead profiles will exceed that of the live profiles by 2070.
The study says that the prediction is based on the current number of Facebook members. He says that if Facebook continues to grow at its current rate of 13 percent per year, then the number of dead profiles will reach 4.9 billion by the end of the century.
The authors point out that the number should not be seen as a point of reference, but rather how the data will be preserved for future generations.
This comes after Facebook expressed its plans to map the world population using AI.
“The results should be interpreted not as a prediction of the future, but as a commentary on current development and an opportunity to shape the future in which we are heading,” said lead author öhman, Ph.D.
“Facebook is just an example of what awaits any platform with similar connectivity and global reach,” he added.
“Never before in history has such a vast archive of human behavior and culture been gathered in one place. Controlling this file will, in a sense, control our history, “said David Watson, co-author of the study and doctoral candidate at the British University.”
Therefore, it is important that we make sure that access to this historical data is not limited to a single company for profit.
“It is also important to make sure that future generations can use our digital heritage to understand its history,” he added.
To preserve and preserve this data, Watson suggests that Facebook should invite historians, archivists, archaeologists, and ethicists.
According to Business Insider, Watson is asking for an effort that not only includes the search for solutions for the coming years but also many decades ahead.
Currently, Facebook allows users to “memorialize” an account if a person they know has died. This keeps the profile active but prevents other users from logging into the account.
It also allows verified immediate family members to remove the profile of their loved ones, if they wish, after dying.
However, Facebook has not offered details of the number of accounts on the platform that are not active or has become a commemorative account. The study by öhman and Watson shows how Facebook could become a digital heritage of a person, even after his death.
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