5 Apps and Sites That Can Kill Facebook

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Mark J. Terrill/AP Ashton Kutcher -- with Mila Kunis at a Los Angeles Clippers game -- is big into lifecasting.
There has never been a social platform as big as Facebook (FB). It kicked off 2015 with a whopping 1.39 billion active monthly users, and 890 million of them are on the site on an average day.

However, it can never get too complacent. Disruptors get disrupted, and there may come a day when another hot site or app does to Facebook what it did to MySpace. In fact, that very disruptor may already exist. Before you spend more time fleshing out your Facebook profile or posting on the walls of friends, let's assess some of the new players that are starting to gain in popularity.

1. Pinterest

The social image bookmarking site is familiar to most online users, and last month it raised money in a financing round that places its value at a cool $11 billion. This is nearly three times what Pinterest was worth just 18 months ago.

Pinterest makes sharing visual content cool, and while the same can be said of a site like Imgur, Pinterest is also a viable social platform on its own. Folks share Imgur images on Facebook, but Pinterest online boards are shared on Pinterest itself.

2. Tinder

Facebook might be a place for your grandmother to keep tabs on you these days, but in its incarnation it was a place for Harvard coeds to see what their fellow students looked like and were up to.

That hasn't necessarily changed. A lot of people on Facebook wind up hooking up with friends or friends of friends through the site, making it a stealth dating site for anyone on the prowl. With many approaching Facebook as a free dating site, it's been a challenge for premium online dating sites to get noticed. However, that also opens the door for free dating apps, including Tinder, that turn getting paired up into a swipe-happy diversion.

3. LinkedIn (LNKD)

LinkedIn is the largest of the companies on this list. It trades publicly with a $33 billion market cap. The career-oriented social networking site has more than 300 million users, and while that's less than a quarter of Facebook's audience, it's a well-to-do crowd that advertisers and corporate recruiters crave.

LinkedIn has been making the most of its scale. It has seen the number of job listings on its site soar tenfold to 3 million by the end of last year. Facebook could have nipped this in the bud. It could have easily added a layer of filter to its hub to serve white-collared pros. It didn't, and now LinkedIn has all but carved out this juicy market all to itself.

4 and 5. Periscope and Meerkat

Periscope and Meerkat are the final two names, and it's easy to lump them together since they are both fast-growing platforms for live video streaming. Meerkat and Twitter's (TWTR) Periscope let folks stream live video that can be shared at the moment and archived to be played shortly after that.

Celebrities including Madonna and Ashton Kutcher are flocking to the "lifecasting" trend, and the more time that folks spend building out lists of friends or interesting people to follow, the less time they have to be on Facebook. This is shaping up to be the year of live streaming, and Facebook won't be able to ignore Periscope and Meerkat.

Motley Fool contributor Rick Munarriz has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. Check out our free report on one great stock to buy for 2015 and beyond.
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