Mark Zuckerburg, now 26, created Facebook in his Harvard dormitory when he was just 19 years old. With 500 million users, Facebook has become the world’s largest social networking site. The site started on Harvard’s campus, where students would have to log in with their school e-mail address.
However, getting to this point for Zuckerburg was not easy. Just months before the site boomed in popularity on his campus, he was almost expelled for hacking into Harvard’s computers and for creating a site that rated students’ looks called “Facemash.”
He was reported to have written in his online journal “The Kirkland Facebook is open on my computer desktop and some of these people have pretty horrendous Facebook pics. I almost want to put some of these faces next to pictures of farm animals and have people vote on which is more attractive.”
Despite this obstacle, Zuckerburg has turned Facebook into an international phenomenon where personal information is shared and communication is infinite.
Zuckerburg grew up in the New York suburb of Dobbs Ferry, N.Y. At the age of 10, Zuckerburg was creating computer codes for computers his father bought him. He would create computer games and include his friends so that they could help him with the graphics and such.
As a senior in high school at Phillips Exeter Academy, Zuckerburg and a friend created a web tool called Synapse.
Synapse is a program that makes up personalized music playlists by referring back to the listener’s preference of music. For this incredible invention, Microsoft offered the pair $1 million. The pair turned down the offer.
Recently, three of Zuckerburg’s peers at Harvard filed a lawsuit against him.
They explained that they had hired Zuckerburg to write a computer code for their social networking site. They believe that he stole their idea, although many disagree.
“I worked with the expectation that I would be included in the overall development of the project but found that I was being subjected to demands on my time without truly being made a part of the development team,” Zuckerburg wrote in an email to Cameron Winklevoss, one of the three filing the lawsuit.
They may have thought of creating a social networking site, but Zuckerburg is the one to pull everything together with his own creative genius.
Zuckerburg has been offered $1 billion from Yahoo to buy the company, but he denied it. He has been named “the smartest person to come out of Harvard” and “the nation’s brightest young philanthropist.”
While appearing on the Oprah Winfrey Show, Zuckerburg announced his more than generous donation of $100 million to the Newark, New Jersey school system.
Unfortunately after this donation, he was accused of trying to save his reputation.
A Facebook spokesman, Larry Yu, said that he was not trying to seize control of his image. He is just trying to better the world, a little bit at a time.
Although Zuckerburg keeps his own life private, his business is so unique and successful due to open communication between all corners of the world.
“I’m trying to make the world a more open place,” explains Zuckerburg in his bio on his own, personal Facebook.
Stephanie Draifinger is a student at West Chester University. She can be reached at SD618671@wcupa.edu.