People love to cite that all-interesting factoid: If Facebook were a country, it would be the third largest in the world. Well, now — thanks to geeky-yet-popular web comic XKCD — you can unlock a whole lot more geographical goodness with the “Updated Map of Online Communities.”
The first map hit the scene back in 2007 and was basically a whimsical view of social media at the time. We’re embedding it below. Note the relative size of communities like MySpace (much bigger than Facebook) and notable lack of Twitter. Oh, how times have changed — Twitter’s now getting more traffic than MySpace.
Back in August, marketing firm Flowtown created its own update to XKCD’s iconic map, sizing online communities based on info collected or published by USA Today, Alexa, Compete and other sources (embedded below). As you can see, Facebook is out in full force, as is Twitter.
XKCD’s newest iteration takes into account social activity rather than membership numbers — according to the map’s legend. And although the method doesn’t seem all that scientific — the legend states that the map was made using a lot of guesswork — the results are pretty interesting.
Note, for instance, the size of FarmVille, which highlights the rise in social gaming, and the ballooning size of 4chan. However, my personal favorite is the “Duckface Mountains.” That particular facial expression, sadly, has indeed grown in prominence over the years. Perhaps it’s time to immigrate…
Map of Online Communities: 2007
Flowtown’s Map of Online Communities: 2010
Updated Map of Online Communities: 2010