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Facebook is LOSING users in Europe, as the social network struggles to repair its image

Facebook lost 1 million users in Europe in the three months to the end of September, having already lost 3 million over the previous three months

FACEBOOK lost one million users in Europe in the three months to September, as the social network continues to tackle the fallout from data scandals and fake news.

It also failed to see any user growth in the US and Canada, with founder Mark Zuckerberg admitting that the social network "may be close to saturated in developed countries."

 Despite suffering a drop in users in Europe, Facebook still enjoyed an 11% growth in net income in the third quarter of 2018
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Despite suffering a drop in users in Europe, Facebook still enjoyed an 11% growth in net income in the third quarter of 2018

At the end of June, Facebook could boast of 279 million daily active users in Europe, which includes UK users.

However, the social network's latest financial report reveals that it lost 1 million of these users in the three months to the end of September, bringing its total in Europe to 278 million users who log on every day.

Making matters worse, Facebook also suffered a drop of 3 million daily users in Europe in the previous three-month period, going from 282 million at the end of March to 279 million.

And no less worryingly for the social network, its number of daily users in the US & Canada – 185 million – has stubbornly remained the same since last September.

 Mark Zuckerberg has blamed disappointed user numbers in Europe and North America on 'saturation' of the market
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Mark Zuckerberg has blamed disappointed user numbers in Europe and North America on 'saturation' of the market

CEO Mark Zuckerberg put the exit of users down to Facebook being "saturated" in the developed world, and noted that the social network did enjoy growth in the 'rest of the world' outside of Europe and North America.

 The chart above shows that daily active users have decreased in Europe in two successive quarters, and have flatlined in North America for a year
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The chart above shows that daily active users have decreased in Europe in two successive quarters, and have flatlined in North America for a year

However, the fact that there has now been two successive periods of user decline in Europe suggests that people in the UK, France and elsewhere on the European continent are growing weary of Facebook.

The #DeleteFacebook movement has been steadily gaining momentum ever since the end of 2016, a year in which Facebook was used as a platform for fake news and misinformation during the US presidential election.

 Cambridge Analytica closed in May 2018, some two months after its role in the 2016 US election and in the Brexit referendum first emerged
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Cambridge Analytica closed in May 2018, some two months after its role in the 2016 US election and in the Brexit referendum first emerged

In the next couple of years, things only got worse for the Californian company, as its network was used by Russian agents as part of a bid to influence the outcome of the French presidential election in April and May of 2017.

In March 2018, it also emerged that Cambridge Analytica had harvested the data of over 50 million Facebook users in the UK and US without their permission.

 Facebook's shares declined by 19% in July, after previous reports of stalled user growth
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Facebook's shares declined by 19% in July, after previous reports of stalled user growth

Mark Zuckerberg has since apologised for such scandals, and even went so far as begging for forgiveness in October 2017 for his company's role in spreading fake news.

But given such fresh scandals as the recent hack that saw 50 million accounts breached, it's clear that Facebook is still struggling to regain the trust of many people in Europe and North America.

And since there's also a growing awareness that social media sites like Facebook can be bad for our mental health, it may be a while before it fully recovers from its current troubles.

What do you think about Facebook? Let us know in the comments.


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