Nowadays business is all about trends – trends in buying and selling, liking and disliking, investment and spending, tax and social values. Trends are analysed by algorithms. Trends actually dictate the future now.
One of the trends worth watching is what is happening to Facebook and their acquisitive, land grabbing tendencies as they buy up 200 acres prime acres in Silicon Valley.
They are moving from social media to social engineering.
This is not a Facebook-bashing blog, although you made them £7.66 last year – we all did in the UK.
No this is about trends within a very smart business outside their immediate areas of activity. They have been acquiring land at an impressive rate, conscious that it is a finite resource and they are very future-minded.
Reports suggest they are planning to build what will be in effect a company town. Another private corporate tower block or closed village is no longer acceptable.
There is hostility and have been physical protests from some sectors of Silicon Valley at their high salaries, their pampered lifestyles (private transport, limitless gourmet food) and their inflationary effect on local property prices.
The Wall Street Journal said the campus is ‘so full of cushy perks some workers may never want to go home….’
Facebook trends may now be to do more community things. At least that is a school of thought doing the gossip rounds.
Welcome to Facebookville
Housing, retail outlets and a hotel open to all at Menlo Park, California is apparently being worked on and should come to fruition within the next few years.
Historians recall that in the USA there were ‘company towns’ and in England in earlier centuries, philanthropic entrepreneurs like the Cadbury family and William Hesketh Lever built Bournville and Port Sunlight respectively to provide good, affordable housing, community facilities and total well-being for their workers.
These observers feel these may be models for the latest Facebook project.
Is this FB’s gameplan?
Facebook already fund a police officer for Menlo Park working near its main campus.
In October 2013 it was reported on SocialTimes that they had a deal with the city council to subsidise 15 units in an upscale apartment complex to meet an agreement it made with the local authority to expand its HQ.
Is it really any different from Tescos or Sainsburys offering banking services? All part of the inevitable diversification of business and the exponential growth of the giant players. Until one day they break up? That at least what trends are telling us.
In the meantime, BBC Newsbeat reported the Facebook Town initiative by saying ‘Facebook fanatics could soon be able to live in Facebook Town’ or ‘Zee Town’ as it may actually be known, while some critics call it “Toytown.”’
But have a look at it and see if you could live there.
Other recent Facebook related blogs:
It Turns Out That 6 Types of Killer Use Facebook … to Commit Crimes! 10 November 2014
Is Social Media Marketing Your Key to Some Extra Income? 21 October 2014
Facebook Is the Newest Kid on the Retail Shopping Block, 16 September 2014