Track the companies that matter to you. It's FREE! Click one of these fan favorites to get started: Apple; Google; Ford.



The Mob Rules Facebook

Watch stocks you care about

The single, easiest way to keep track of all the stocks that matter...

Your own personalized stock watchlist!

It's a 100% FREE Motley Fool service...

Click Here Now

For as much as we Fools castigate Facebook for its profit-starved business model, its reputation as a toy, and its odd equity practices, there's no doubting its power as a platform. For developers, Facebook can be a huge moneymaker.

Witness Mob Wars. Developer Analytics says that the game, which has more than 52,000 fans, pulls in $22,000 a day in revenue. That's more than $8 million annualized.

I've been invited to play Mob Wars several times but, honestly, I'm afraid of the game's addictive power. So is screenwriter J.C. Tregarthen, who told me in a Facebook chat earlier today that he's trying to cut back on his play due to time constraints. He's not alone: A search of "Mob Wars" and "addictive" yields 157,000 hits.

As an investor, I find this interesting because it proves that network effects can be as powerful in social circles as they are in e-commerce. Think about that. We've assumed that network-driven e-commerce businesses such as eBay (Nasdaq: EBAY  ) , Blue Nile (Nasdaq: NILE  ) , and Amazon (Nasdaq: AMZN  ) were a breed apart from their social brethren.

If they're not -- if social networks create exponential value as they grow, just as e-commerce networks do -- then it's possible that the Facebook ecosystem will produce the sort of outsized returns Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT  ) is hoping for. And, if that's true, it won't be long before Google (Nasdaq: GOOG  ) makes an even bigger bet on the social sphere.

Mob Wars and popular peers FunSpace and SuperWall won't transform Facebook into Google. Or, if they do, it won't be soon. What they've proven instead is that all digital networks, when they're engaged, can unleash an abundance of real-world riches.

Over time, Facebook's value will correlate to the number of engaging digital networks it attracts versus those that migrate to News Corp.'s (NYSE: NWS  ) MySpace or elsewhere. That's a massive opportunity, Mr. Zuckerberg. Will you seize it?

Get your clicks on related Foolishness: contributor Tim Beyers had positions in Google shares and 2010 LEAPs at the time of publication. He hunts for the best of tech as a contributor to Motley Fool Rule Breakers, which counts Blue Nile and Google among its core holdings. Please try the service risk-free for 30 days.

Amazon and eBay are Stock Advisor selections. Microsoft is an Inside Value pick. The Motley Fool's disclosure policy has an itchy Twitter finger. Isn't there an ointment for that?

Read/Post Comments (1) | Recommend This Article (1)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

Add your comment.

Compare Brokers

Fool Disclosure

Sponsored Links

Leaked: Apple's Next Smart Device
(Warning, it may shock you)
The secret is out... experts are predicting 458 million of these types of devices will be sold per year. 1 hyper-growth company stands to rake in maximum profit - and it's NOT Apple. Show me Apple's new smart gizmo!

DocumentId: 714693, ~/Articles/ArticleHandler.aspx, 10/27/2016 10:55:53 PM

Report This Comment

Use this area to report a comment that you believe is in violation of the community guidelines. Our team will review the entry and take any appropriate action.

Sending report...

Today's Market

updated 1 hour ago Sponsored by:
DOW 18,169.68 -29.65 -0.16%
S&P 500 2,133.04 -6.39 -0.30%
NASD 5,215.97 -34.29 -0.65%

Create My Watchlist

Go to My Watchlist

You don't seem to be following any stocks yet!

Better investing starts with a watchlist. Now you can create a personalized watchlist and get immediate access to the personalized information you need to make successful investing decisions.

Data delayed up to 5 minutes

Related Tickers

10/27/2016 4:00 PM
AMZN $818.36 Down -4.23 -0.51% CAPS Rating: ****
EBAY $28.81 Down -0.01 -0.03%
eBay CAPS Rating: ****
FOX $26.24 Down -0.28 -1.06%
Twenty-First Centu… CAPS Rating: ***
GOOGL $817.35 Down -4.75 -0.58%
Alphabet (A shares… CAPS Rating: *****
MSFT $60.10 Down -0.53 -0.87%
Microsoft CAPS Rating: ****
NILE $34.42 Down -0.50 -1.43%
Blue Nile CAPS Rating: **