Just seven months after hitting the 100 million user mark last August and 90 days after hitting the 150 million mark in January, Facebook confirmed today that the site has just crossed another major milestone: 200 million active users.
On average, Facebook has added nearly half a million users per day, every day, since late August. If Facebook were a country, it would now have the 5th largest population in the world (about 70% of Facebook users are outside the United States).
In addition, Facebook and Causes are running a charity virtual gifts campaign to celebrate the milestone, The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), one of the participants in the program, reports. Senior External Relations Officer Claudia Gonzalez-Gisiger says users will be able to donate $10 for a “virtual tent” or $5 for a “gift token” in the UNHCR’s “Gimme Shelter” campaign.
“Facebook now has more than 200 million active users,” said Facebook spokesperson Kathleen Loughlin. “While an important milestone for the company, we believe 200 million people, as an interconnected whole, have a greater opportunity to initiate and affect positive change,” she added.
Update: Facebook has just posted a blog post on hitting the 200 million user mark. CEO Mark Zuckerberg says Facebook will be promoting virtual gifts for charity through its Facebook for Good initiative to celebrate the milestone:
We’ve also worked with 16 charitable and advocacy organizations to create gifts that are now available in our gift shop. The organization the gift represents will receive between 90 percent to 95 percent of the cost of the gift, after administrative expenses for the transaction, so we encourage you to share your passion for a cause with your friends and in doing so, support the cause. Facebook will not keep any part of your contribution.