Facebook will get more money from my eyeballs, especially if Mark Zuckenberg's vision to connect everybody on the planet comes to fruition. It's not important that half the planet doesn't have modern electricity or phones. Most of the other three billion people have access to mobile phones where they're going to find Facebook powering their phone books and notification client.
Around a year ago, Marc Andreessen put my value to Facebook at "one or two dollars per user"($1.53 to be precise), which sounded perfectly acceptable to him. Last year, "each of the 845 million active members brought $4.39 in revenue and $1.18 in net income. Even better, based on the $3.9 billion in cash and marketable securities on FB’s balance sheet, each of these users generated a cosy cash input of $1.53 dollars," according to Frederic Filloux of Monday Note.
If the stock market values Facebook at $100 billion, my Facebook subscription is worth $118. I won't have to pay that money but that's what the market thinks my attention and my presence is worth (alongside every other Facebooker too).
Frederic Filloux cranks some other media property numbers for comparison.
LinkedIn: Today, LinkedIn has about 145 millions users, for a $7.7 billion market cap. That makes my LinkedIn attention worth $57, half of what I'm valued on Facebook.
The New York Times: 43 million Unique Views for the Times globally, 60 million for its guide site About.com. Then add 50 million for the NYT print circulation along with the Boston Globe newspaper sales. Filloux says, "Based on today’s $1.14 billion market cap, this yields a valuation of $23 per NYT customer, five times less than Facebook. That’s normal, many would say. Except for one fact: In 2011, each NYT customer brought $46 in revenue, almost ten times more than Facebook. As for the profit (a meager $56 million for the NYT), each customer brought a little more than a dollar."
Hypeconomics? Based on what I buy through NYT advertisements, I think Facebook economics are hyped. Facebook is preparing to offer shares a multiple of 100 times its earnings and 25 times its revenue. Compare that to Apple's worth (13 times earnings) and Google (20 times earnings). I'll be interested in how things pan out in five years time. At the moment, I think the market has elevated Facebook into a dangerous bubble.