Can you believe that Facebook turns 18 this year? One of the troubled teenager’s biggest problems is that not only are the young people still leaving in droves, many of the remaining denizens are 50 or over and susceptible to the various predators and sources of misinformation that plague the site.
Well, AARP wants to change the landscape of social media for those who are approaching or already living out their twilight years. Basically, they want to lure them away from Facebook. The organization spent untold amounts of money creating Senior Planet Community, which is kind of like a baby version of reddit in that the site is broken into interest categories such as photography, gardening, pets, and fitness enthusiasts.
The site was developed by Older Adults Technology Service (OATS), who are an AARP affiliate. OATS were leading computer classes for seniors and moved online during the pandemic, and the idea grew from there.
The main difference is that Senior Planet Community is absolutely free (for now, at least), including a complete lack of advertisements. If Grandma’s gonna unwittingly spend hundreds on micro-transactions, it won’t be taking place here, and not just because there’s no mobile app or games just yet. As far as moderation, there’s a long list of house rules that involve courtesy and encourage the citing of sources. Posts can be reported should they violate the rules.
We’ll see how it goes. There are plenty of bad actors that could pretend to be age 50+, or don’t even have to lie about it. We also wonder how long they’ll be able to go without advertisers.
We’re all getting older, including Zuckerberg. Don’t believe it? Here’s video proof.
Main and thumbnail images via Unsplash.