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"It’s Bigger Than Twitter!"

Hey, guess what – Facebook mobile is bigger than Twitter.

And Google Buzz is already bigger than Twitter, too.

Looking at the respective userbases, these are both factual statements. In reality, they’re very misleading, as ‘bigger’ doesn’t mean what it used to.

It isn’t about profiles. It isn’t about page views. And it isn’t really about active users.

It’s about impact. It’s about power. And it’s about influence.

Facebook has 350-400 million users, but when was the last time you saw a newspaper or TV show check the reaction on Facebook immediately after a major story has broke? Why weren’t the citizens of Iran tapping into Facebook, and the enormous numbers of people on there, during their crisis? Why aren’t people involved in crisis situations or grounded airplanes or rants against airplanes turning to Facebook before Twitter? I mean, if everybody is on there, if it’s the biggest, surely that makes absolute sense.

Right?

Wrong. News doesn’t spread so well on Facebook. It spreads even worse on Facebook Mobile. And given how many people seem to be ignoring or deactivating Google Buzz (and with good reason), and how Gmail’s numbers are never going to accurately reflect Buzz usage, it’s way too early to evaluate how well news is spreading on there (and if it ever really will).

But news does spread on Twitter, and it spreads fast. More importantly, that same news quickly (and sometimes immediately) embeds itself into both the consciousness of the Twitter collective and the mainstream media. Which means that same news then embeds itself into the consciousness of the mainstream public, too.

With a few exceptions, things that happen on Facebook tend to stay on Facebook. Things that happen on Twitter make things happen everywhere else. And that’s a lot, lot bigger.

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