• Sumo

“Walled gardens” was a term used to describe the AOL and CompuServe services which tried to do everything for everyone in the early days of the internet.

Ultimately, they failed in their quest to dominate as smaller services took advantage of people not wishing to be tied up by the big boys.

Leaping right up to date and we have new walled gardens vying for pole position in the world of Social Networks.

There are a number of social networking sites and surely 2011 could be classed as the year of domination for some of the top dogs.

If you own a social networking site not only are you very rich but also very powerful. Facebook has around 800 million users around the world and more than half of them log in each day.

Facebook is so big I wouldn’t be surprised if they had their own currency soon!

Google Plus was launched in June and already has around 40 million users. A long way behind Facebook, but I feel the gap will start to close in the New Year. Whilst both Google and Facebook compete for basically the same audience it could make for interesting viewing for the neutral. If there is such a thing as a neutral that is!

The third big shooter is Twitter and it has ruffled a few feathers recently with some changes that didn’t appeal to everyone.

In my opinion Twitter are not too bothered about upsetting some of the old regime and are looking for a new generation of users.

It is my prediction for 2012 that Facebook, Google Plus and Twitter will be the big three players and will attempt to make their own ‘walled gardens’ more secure.

I think the gloves will be off and there will be lots more things like improved video chat, movies, music and lots more great content to keep you within their walls, unable to escape until you have satisfied their needs, or they yours.

So, with 2012 upon us, how will your garden grow?

Will you become entrapped inside the walled garden or will you have a little more freedom and still explore the World Wide Web as it was intended, following the well laid out links from place to place whilst keeping one eye on how the garden grows?



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