I think this is the first positive earnings Facebook has had since their IPO, both financially and the general consensus amongst the tech and financial press. However:
One of the areas where the company wasn’t so convincing was in dispelling concerns that Facebook is losing appeal among its non-core users. Mark Zuckerberg insisted that it “just isn’t true” that teenagers are leaving the service, but the company has yet to offer convincing data that this is the case. Vague statistics like the 20 billion minutes per day that users spend in aggregate on Facebook don’t dispel the perception that a core base of users are causing a disproportionate share of that figure, while the bulk of Facebook users find it less essential to their daily lives.
Facebook is showing it can keep its membership growing while extracting more ad revenue from them. The company may still be falling short of the high expectations many had of it early on, but on the other hand its second act is not as disappointing as many bears had assumed. Facebook is the first company to successfully monetize mobile ads on a significant scale. For now, that’s an achievement that the company and its supporters are right to celebrate.
This is going to be an interesting one to follow over the next few years.