Today, the social network that used to dominate Brazil shuts down permanently. Orkut, the first social media site to gain massive traction there, will allow users to export their photos and information, but Google will discontinue the site. Launched in 2004, the network gained popularity in Brazil, reaching around 40 million Brazilian active accounts at its peak in 2008. In December 2013, the site only had 6 million hits; Facebook, now the country's biggest social media site, had 67 million hits during the same period.
Orkut was significant because it was Brazil's first major social network that became popular as many Brazilians were getting online for the first time. As such, it was a tool that aided "digital literacy" as Brazilians began using email, instant messaging, and file-sharing.
Now, Facebook dominates, with an estimated 85 percent of Brazilian internet users on the network. With Orkut gone, it gives Facebook an opportunity to grow even more.