Facebook has more than two billion users worldwide and a market capitalization of more than 3.700 billion. Getting an account is free. But what is the value of putting users on the service?
A group of economists and media researchers in the U.S. investigated the matter, with the help of auctions. Real users were offered real money to close their account during the periods between one day and one year.
got different groups of users say how much they wanted to be paid. In all the auctions was the price converted to a one-year period over 1,000 dollars. This is equivalent to over 9.000 sek.
"We were surprised that the amount was so high," says Jay Corrigan, economics professor at Kenyon College in Ohio, USA.
He conducted the auctions in the year 2016. Since then, has Facebook been hit by a series of scandals, including by allowing the company to Cambridge Analytica collect the personal information of millions of users. Jay Corrigan does not believe that the scandals have had a significant impact on how highly users value the service.
"I can only say that tens of millions of new users have been added after Cambridge Analytica made headlines in the media," he says.
employees describe their findings in today's issue of the journal Plos one.