FriendFeed Has ~75,000 Active Users (Personal Research)

I believe my little research project has gathered enough data to produce some meaningful results. Please read my previous post regarding the methodology and imitations of this analysis. Just to clarify, my analysis covers only active and public FriendFeed users, and only those I was able to discover.

But enough with the disclaimers, let’s see some numbers.

How many FriendFeed users are there anyway?

For now I stopped crawling at about 60K users since I was discovering less and less new users with every crawl until it became clear that I’m discovering users who have just joined or existing inactive users who just happened to post something and went back to sleep. Basically they don’t interest me in the context of this little research.

Factoring in a few technical limitations, API coverage issues and some secret sauce, I assume I’m missing about 15-20% of the users. In fact I could be bold and speculate that FriendFeed has an active userbase of about 75K users. Again, this is based only on partial data and my own interpretation.

What is the public/private ratio?

The total number of users my crawler discovered is 57560 .
49580 of these users are public, while 7980 are private.
So the public/private ratio is about 6:1 .

Who are the most popular FriendFeed Users?

Out of this total of 57560 users, here are the top 20 “heaviest” (most subscribed to) FF users:

User Subscribers % of Total
1 scobleizer 9558 19.28%
2 techcrunch 6393 12.89%
3 leolaporte 4913 9.91%
4 jasoncalacanis 4838 9.76%
5 davew 4201 8.47%
6 laughingsquid 3848 7.76%
7 loic 3787 7.64%
8 petecashmore 3166 6.39%
9 bret 3164 6.38%
10 steverubel 3111 6.27%
11 chrisbrogan 3027 6.11%
12 fredwilson 3014 6.08%
13 l0ckergn0me 2967 5.98%
14 paul 2648 5.34%
15 factoryjoe 2533 5.11%
16 thomashawk 2505 5.05%
17 jzawodn 2167 4.37%
18 veronicabelmont 2076 4.19%
19 louisgray 2060 4.15%
20 elatable 1989 4.01%

You probably didn’t need my help to figure out that Robert Scoble is the most popular user on FriendFeed but my research seems to support this. Almost 20% of the public population I discovered are subscribed to his feed, 13% follow Michael Arrington, 5% follow Thomas Hawk and only 4% are “stuck following Louis Gray“…

What next?

Any suggestions for further analysis are welcome. I have my own ideas but I’m interested to know what others think and if this research has any value. Leave a comment or contact me by mail.

I wonder, maybe I should just let people search this database? You could ask “who follows louisgray” and get a list of users subscribed to him. Interesting.

14 thoughts on “FriendFeed Has ~75,000 Active Users (Personal Research)

  1. Pingback: Poplex » Blog Archive » FriendFeed Has ~75,000 Active Users (Personal Research)

  2. Susan Beebe

    This data is lame. Notice # 20 – he barely even uses FriendFeed at ALL! He only has 2 organic posts. His entire FF is just a cross-post of his twitter and upcoming feeds – that’s it… ok ooooh 14 comments since last year – wow! let me go follow that guy! gees.

    @smbeebe // Susan Beebe

  3. User21 Post author

    Susan, just to clarify – in this context “active” means discoverable, and it doesn’t matter if a person actually does anything on FF as long as his feed keep flowing in. If he is active on twitter and doesn’t even set foot in FF, he will still be picked up by my crawler because his twitter activity contributes to his FF feed.
    Also not that no matter if he spends time on FF, the data I collected suggests that many people follow his FF feed, which is what I wanted to find out.

  4. Andrew

    I’m currently following 5 people on your Top 20 list: davew (#5), loic (#7), bret (#9), fredwilson (#12), and louisgray (#19).

    However, I get plenty of FF items from the other 15 people in my FF stream thanks to the power of Likes and Comments.

  5. User21 Post author

    Igor, all this and more is already in the works. I think I will eventually open the database for public search.

  6. Pingback: How Many Active Users Are On FriendFeed?

  7. felix

    Interesting work! Although, Scoble’s posted that he’s now got 15k followers and arrington’s said about 10k. So it could be that your numbers are up to 50% off? How did you estimate the 10-15%?

  8. User21 Post author

    Felix, please take a look at this FF thread.

    Check the numbers reported there by Susan Mernit and Jeremiah Owyang. Susan reports 1290 followers, I was able to discover 1028. Jeremiah reports 1979 followers, I was able to discover 1535. I’d say this fits well within the 15-20% margin. I will publish a longer list in which these two users appear.

    Also, as far as the “big guys” go, I’m sure I’m missing a lot more than that which is natural given their popularity. There are probably a lot of dormant/inactive users who simply follow Scoble and Arrington without contributing anything to the feed (which makes them non-discoverable by my crawler).

  9. Pingback: Twitter Bounced Back! [I Toldja So]

  10. Pingback: Twitter Bounced Back! [I Toldja So] | World News

  11. Pingback: Bookmarks about Scoble

  12. Pingback: What is “Mainstream?” User Numbers on the Net, SMS and Beyond » No Mod Required » Blog Archive

  13. Pingback: Twitter Bounced Back! [I Toldja So] | Social Media News Desk

Comments are closed.