ReadWriteWeb has an interesting entry that says that photo sharing site has moved into second place behind only Flickr — in New Zealand, anyway. 

One interesting nuggest is that gets 59% of its traffic from a collection of small Facebook applications they’ve created.  These applications are being widely adopted on Facebook as a great way to share pictures.  Clearly Facebook’s application strategy is paying dividends.  Less clear is how this strategy is going to play out for, which reports that their average time per visit on the site is much lower than other photo sharing sites.  On the one hand, this may be a great thing for the visitors: they are getting more value for less of their precious attention.  On the other hand, is going to get the benefits of all those users, or is Facebook?

Another interesting nugget is that is making so much progress in New Zealand — but apparently not everywhere.  Will photo sharing be another domain, like social networking, in which geography determines use?  There are network effects in photo sharing, since it’s more convenient to be in the same network as the people I like to share photos with, though the network effects should be less powerful than in social networking, since I can still share photos with you even if you’re in a different network.

An interesting research project would be to track the evolution of these geography effects across time.  One hypothesis is that people are always going to have strong ties to people they’re physically adjacent to, in which case these geography effects will be enduring.  Another hypothesis is that heavy net users will tend to have relationships that are more independent of geography, in which case these geography effects will decay in importance with time. 

Any predictions?


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