Zuckerberg decides not to censor Trump’s posts on Facebook, despite employees petitioning for the removal of posts as ‘hate speech’. The decision has prompted employees across the company to complain on Facebook’s internal messaging service and in person to Zuckerberg and other managers that it was bending the site’s rules for Trump. Some employees who review content on Facebook threatened to quit. Facebook:
In the weeks ahead, we’re going to begin allowing more items that people find newsworthy, significant, or important to the public interest—even if they might otherwise violate our standards.
Facebook has never contacted us about employee complaints and has never removed a post. We are not concerned about the liberal Clinton elites who are so intolerant of conservative ideas that they would seek to censor the Trump campaign’s enormously successful Facebook engagement.
Facebook starts testing “reactions,” which extend the site’s “like button” functions with new options : Love, Haha, Yay, Wow, Sad and Angry. Keeping with Zuckerberg’s wishes, there is no “Dislike” button. The test is currently limited to users in Ireland and Spain. Zuckerberg:
For many years though, people have asked us to add a “dislike” button. Not every moment is a good moment, and sometimes you just want a way to express empathy. These are important moments where you need the power to share more than ever, and a Like might not be the best way to express yourself. Reactions gives you new ways to express love, awe, humor and sadness. It’s not a dislike button, but it does give you the power to easily express sorrow and empathy — in addition to delight and warmth.
Zuckerberg calls for universal internet access in partnership with the the ONE campaign.
When people have access to the tools and knowledge of the internet, they have access to opportunities that make life better for us all.
Zuckerberg invites Mohamed to Facebook HQ.
Zuckerberg says Facebook will roll out a button that lets users dislike comments and posts.
I think people have asked about the dislike button for many years. Today is a special day because today is the day I can say we’re working on it and shipping it.
Zuckerberg said the initial interface for Facebook didn’t allow for a dislike button because he didn’t want it to become a Reddit-like forum where posts and comments get upvoted and downvoted.
That isn’t what we’re here to build in the world. What they really want is the ability to express empathy. Not every moment is a good moment.
Zuckerberg takes No. 1 position on Vanity Fair’s New Establishment list, beating Uber CEO Travis Kalanick (2), Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos (3) and Apple’s Tim Cook and Jony Ive (tied at 4).
No company in history has ever achieved the scale of Facebook, which now reaches nearly 1.5 billion total users. Nor has there ever been a mogul quite like Zuckerberg. He rules, with near omnipotence, over Silicon Valley’s grandest empire, and remains eager for more.
Trump’s immigration plan criticizes Zuckerberg, who supports a more open immigration policy. While Zuckerberg wants to make more H-1B visas available to tech employers so they can hire foreign skilled workers, Trump says he wants to require employers to pay H-1B workers much more money, which he said would discourage companies from hiring them and boost job prospects for Americans. He also wants to have tech jobs offered to unemployed Americans before they can be filled by workers with H-1B visas.
This will improve the number of black, Hispanic and female workers in Silicon Valley who have been passed over in favor of the H-1B program. Mark Zuckerberg’s personal Senator, Marco Rubio, has a bill to triple H-1Bs that would decimate women and minorities.
Zuckerberg and Chan announce their pregnancy on Facebook, sharing that Chan had three miscarriages:
Priscilla and I have some exciting news: we’re expecting a baby girl! This will be a new chapter in our lives. We’ve already been so fortunate for the opportunity to touch people’s lives around the world — Cilla as a doctor and educator, and me through this community and philanthropy. Now we’ll focus on making the world a better place for our child and the next generation. We want to share one experience to start. We’ve been trying to have a child for a couple of years and have had three miscarriages along the way…Our good news is that our pregnancy is now far enough along that the risk of loss is very low and we are very hopeful. Cilla and our child are both healthy, I’m extremely excited to meet her and our dog Beast has no idea what’s coming. In our ultrasound, she even gave me a thumbs up “like” with her hand, so I’m already convinced she takes after me. We’re looking forward to welcoming her into the world and sharing more soon when she’s ready to come out and meet everyone!
Zuckerberg and Chan donate $5 million to the “I’m In” campaign launched by TheDream.us, a national college scholarship fund for undocumented immigrants. The fund targets students who came to the U.S. as children and received Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival status, an immigration policy started by President Obama that gives them exemption from deportation and allows them to work. The funds will go to 400 students over the next five years. Zuckerberg:
America was founded as a nation of immigrants. We ought to welcome smart and hardworking young people from every nation, and to help everyone in our society achieve their full potential.
Zuckerberg holds an “Ask Me Anything” session where he answers questions from celebrities such as Shakira and Richard Branson, as well as ordinary Facebook users. Questions include: how Facebook will connect the world better; how he sees technology helping the disadvantaged; how many hours he works a week, and requests to see pictures of his dog, Beast.
Zuckerberg and Chan donate $75 million to San Francisco General Hospital. The donation is to help fund equipment and technology. San Francisco Mayor Lee:
It’s incredibly gracious they have recognized the importance of this hospital to the entire city. They have made sure, in the future, there will be enough money to maintain and modernize it. They want a public hospital as important as this to be at world-class standards every year.
Zuckerberg gives the three-, five-, and 10-year outlooks for Facebook on the earnings call. He wants a billion users each for WhatsApp, Messenger, Search, Video, NewsFeed, Oculus and Instagram and will aggressively monetize them once they reach mass scale. He wants to improve the advertising experience, particularly on mobile, and will be investing in ways to better target and measure campaigns through data. Facebook wants to help brands measure online to offline sales conversions to boost ad spend on mobile which is currently only about 11% of ad budgets. Facebook also wants to build the next major computing platform, which Zuckerberg says could be augmented reality and Oculus. He also wants to bring the Internet to more people through Internet.org. Zuckerberg:
[…] You’ve heard me talk about our big company goals of connecting everyone, understanding the world and building the next generation of platforms. These goals are important for us and part of our foundation of our strategy for the next decade, but achieving these will involve many different efforts and steps along the way, some that will be achieved rapidly and others that are going to take longer.
Facebook reports $3.2 billion revenue for the quarter compared with a Wall Street consensus of $3.12 billion. Advertising revenue is $2.96 billion, up 64% from a year earlier, and EPS is $0.43 versus an expected $0.40. Monthly active users were 1.35 billion, up 14%, mobile monthly active users were 1.12 billion and daily active users were 864 million. Zuckerberg and Wehner give weaker guidance: full-year total GAP expenses including stock compensation may grow 45%-50% while 2015 expenses could be up 50%-70%. They say this is an ‘investment year’. Zuckerberg:
We’re going to prepare for the future by investing aggressively
Zuckerberg speaks Mandarin Chinese during a 30 minute Q & A session with students at Tsinghua University in Beijing. Zuckerberg is a newly appointed member of the University’s School of Economics and Management. Zuckerberg talks about talking about innovation in China, Facebook’s presence in the country. He says Facebook is already in China, helping Chinese companies increase foreign buyers by using Facebook ads and running tourism ads for two Chinese cities, and says it wants to expand there. He also says he learned Chinese to ask his wife Priscilla Chan’s grandmother, who only speaks Chinese, for her hand in marriage.
Priscilla and I decided to get married, so I told her grandmother in Chinese, and she was very surprised.
After being challenged by Cir Christie, Zuckerberg takes the challenge and calls out Bill Gates, Reed Hastings, and Sheryl Sandberg to do the challenge in 24 hours.
Zuckerberg writes in an editorial in the Wall Street Journal that everyone should have basic internet access for free. He compares internet access to 911 services, which are available to everyone at no cost:
Anyone can call 911 to get medical attention or report a crime even if you haven’t paid for a phone plan. In the future, everyone should have access to basic Internet services as well, even if they haven’t paid for a data plan. And just as basic phone services encouraged more people to get phones, basic Internet services will encourage many more people to get a data plan.
Zuckerberg reflects on Facebook’s 10-year anniversary on interview with TODAY’s Savannah Guthrie.
I remember really vividly — you know, having pizza with my friends a day or two after — when I opened up the first version of Facebook at my school.
Arrington interviews Zuckerberg at TechCrunch 40:
If you take all the people in the world and all their friends, that’s the social graph…What we try to do at Facebook is model that
You’re trying to mirror the real world?
Zuckerberg discusses writing the first code for Facebook, and says his experience writing games and a music player for himself while young helped.
If you want to be able to connect with the people around you you have to start building software that other people want to use as well.
At Harvard, he wrote a scraper to extract information from the course cataloge and ran the site from a laptop in the dorm room. He says he met Chan at a going away party after Harvard threatened to kick him out. People involved in Facebook focused on developing it for fellow students, and talked about how someone else like Microsoft would likely build the service for everyone to use:
We thought, we’re just college students, what do we know about building software that hundreds of millions of people are going to use?
Zuckerberg takes stage at Y Combinator Startup School.
I’m not good at pitching anything. I never really pitched. There’s Eduardo who did some. Moved out here Peter Thiel was our first investor. Sean Parker helped set us up with first outsourced accounting firm, introduced us to Peter. There were already hundreds of thousands of users. It was clear that if we executed we would continue to do well. I was 19, I doubt I was at all impressive. For the first two years the only advice he would give me was “don’t mess it up”. Gets back to the “build something people want” motto. Early on we were clueless, all of us came from having users and growing at a sustainable rate. When we were first meeting with Peter, we didn’t have Facebook.com. We were The Facebook. That’s a winner.
Graham interviews Zuckerberg about the flexibility that being in college allows, and he says that remaining flexible can help a career:
You’re going to change what you do.
Arrington talks with Zuckerberg at Disrupt 2012 in his first interview after the Facebook IPO announcement. They discuss the stock price, ads, Facebook phone, and the mobile version vs the website. Arrington:
The stock has lost roughly half its value…if you could’ve done anything differently with hindsight?
The performance of the stock has obviously been disappointing…We’re going to execute this mission where we’re going to make the world more open and connected
Zuckerberg is chosen as Time’s Person of the Year, for the role he played and still plays in founding and running Facebook. Runners-up are WikiLeaks editor-in-chief Julian Assange, President of Afghanistan Hamid Karzai, the 33 rescued Chilean miners, and the rightwing US Tea Party movement. Time journalist Lev Grossman says that Zuckerberg received the honor:
…for connecting more than half a billion people and mapping the social relations among them; for creating a new system of exchanging information; and for changing how we all live our lives.
The first trailer for the upcoming movie based on Facebook’s early days is released. The movie will star Arnie Hammer as both twins and Jesse Eisenberg as Mark Zuckerberg.
Wall Street’s D8 interviews Zuckerberg about Facebook privacy. Zuckerberg says this on Facebook violating people privacy:
If I knew what I know now then I hope I wouldn’ve made those mistakes, but I can’t go back and change the past, I can only do what we think is the right thing going forward.
Zuckerberg is interviewed at the Facebook offices in Palo Alto.
The goal that we went into it with wasn’t to make an online community, but to make a mirror of the real community that existed in real life. So The Facebook for your school isn’t somewhere where people actually go to meet, but where you go to see who knows each other. Like an icebreaker. You can find out something about people, and see who you want to meet, and maybe you can message them and make a really informal way to start a dialogue.
On future growth:
There really doesn’t have to be much more. Like a lot of people are focussed on taking over the world, or doing the biggest thing, or getting the most users. Part of making a difference and doing something cool is focusing intensely.
Zuckerberg hacks into ConnectU’s site and makes changes to multiple user profiles, including makeing a fake profile for Cameron Winklevoss. The profile lists Cameron’s height as 7’4″, his hair color as “Ayran Blond,” and his eye color as “Sky Blue.” He listed Cameron’s “language” as “WASP-y.” He also logged into the accounts of some ConnectU users and changes their privacy settings so they are invisible to other users. He also deactivates about 20 ConnectU accounts entirely.
The HarvardConnect team send a cease & desist letter to Zuckerberg.
The Winklevosses and Narendra find out about thefacebook.com when they read a press release in The Harvard Crimson, the student newspaper.
Tyler: None of us knew about it until we picked up the [Crimson]. We read this article that says ‘thefacebook launched by Mark Zuckerberg,’ and we sort of stepped back and were like, ‘Well, that sounds like our idea…’
According to Gao, who looked at the HarvardConnection code afterward, Zuckerberg had left the HarvardConnection code incomplete and non-functional, with a registration that did not connect with the back-end connections.
Zuckerberg launches thefacebook.com, a social network for Harvard students, designed to expand to other schools around the country.
In a meeting with the team Zuckerberg tells the HarvardConnection team that he will continue to work on the site and would email the group later in the week. Zuckerberg informs them that he is involved with another project. but does not elaborate. He does not mention that he has registered thefacebook.com nor that he is setting up a rival website.
After the meeting, Zukerberg has another IM exchange with his friend. He tells her, in effect, that he had wimped out. He hadn’t been able to break the news to Cameron and Tyler, in part, he said, because he was “intimidated” by them. He called them “poor bastards.”
Zuckerberg registers the domain name thefacebook.com. The next day he emails Eduardo Saverin, saying that the site thefacebook.com was almost complete and that they should discuss marketing strategies
After several weeks of saying he was busy with other work, Zuckerberg meets with the Winklevosses and Narendra in his dorm room, allegedly confirming his interest and assuring them that the site was almost complete. On the whiteboard in his room, Zuckerberg allegedly had scrawled multiple lines of code under the heading “Harvard Connection,” and this would be the only time they saw any of his work.
In early January Zuckerberg has the following IM exchange with a friend
FRIEND: so have you decided what you are going to do about the websites?
ZUCK: yea i’m going to f-ck them
ZUCK: probably in the year
In emails Zuckerberg says he is too busy to work on the site
Sorry it’s taken a while for me to get back to you. I’m completely swamped with work this week. I have three programming projects and a final paper due by Monday, as well as a couple of problem sets due Friday. I’ll be available to discuss the site again starting Tuesday…I”m still a little skeptical that we have enough functionality in the site to really draw the attention and gain the critical mass necessary to get a site like this to run…Anyhow, we’ll talk about it once I get everything else done.
An IM exchange with Zuckerberg’s friend shows he is conflicted about developing HarvardConnections (“that dating site) and thefacebook.
Z: So you know how I’m making that dating site
Z: I wonder how similar that is to the Facebook thing
Z: Because they’re probably going to be released around the same time
Z: Unless I f-ck the dating site people over and quit on them right before I told them I’d have it done.
Z: Like I don’t think people would sign up for the facebook thing if they knew it was for dating
Z: and I think people are skeptical about joining dating things too.
Z: But the guy doing the dating thing is going to promote it pretty well.
Z: I wonder what the ideal solution is.
Z: I think the Facebook thing by itself would draw many people, unless it were released at the same time as the dating thing.
Z: In which case both things would cancel each other out and nothing would win. Any ideas? Like is there a good way to consolidate the two.
D: We could make it into a whole network like a friendster. haha. Stanford has something like that internally
Z: Well I was thinking of doing that for the facebook. The only thing that’s different about theirs is that you like request dates with people or connections with the facebook you don’t do that via the system.
Z: I also hate the fact that I’m doing it for other people haha. Like I hate working under other people. I feel like the right thing to do is finish the facebook and wait until the last day before I’m supposed to have their thing ready and then be like “look yours isn’t as good as this so if you want to join mine you can…otherwise I can help you with yours later.” Or do you think that’s too dick?
D: I think you should just ditch them
Z: The thing is they have a programmer who could finish their thing and they have money to pour into advertising and stuff. Oh wait I have money too. My friend who wants to sponsor this is head of the investment society. [He is talking about Eduardo Saverin] Apparently insider trading isn’t illegal in Brazil so he’s rich lol.
Zuckerberg sends an IM to his friend Severin:
Check this site out: www.harvardconnection.com and then go to harvardconnection.com/datehome.php. Someone is already trying to make a dating site. But they made a mistake haha. They asked me to make it for them. So I’m like delaying it so it won’t be ready until after the facebook thing comes out.
Zuckerberg tells Cameron that he doesn’t expect completion of the project to be difficult. Over the next few days he sends a series of emails indicating he is working on the site.
I read over all the stuff you sent and it seems like it shouldn’t take too long to implement, so we can talk about that after I get all the basic functionality up tomorrow night.
And on Dec 1:
I put together one of the two registration pages so I have everything working on my system now. I’ll keep you posted as I patch stuff up and it starts to become completely functional.
The brothers and Narendra meet Zuckerberg in the dining hall of Harvard’s Kirkland House, where they explain the HarvardConnection website, the plan to expand to other schools after launch, the confidential nature of the project, and the importance of getting there first. During the meeting, Zuckerberg allegedly enters into an oral contract with Narendra and the Winklevosses to become a partner in HarvardConnection.
Although his attorneys have denied that any formal discussion about compensation or ownership of Harvard Connection took place, Gao would later tell the court:
I told him that [Narendra and the Winklevosses] would either pay him on a rolling basis or take him on as a partner with the possibility of taking an equal stake. He became visibly excited. He told me that he wanted the latter option … because he thought the Harvard Connection website had the potential to reach out to a very large user base.
He is given the private server location and password for the unfinished HarvardConnection website and code, with the understanding that he will finish the programming necessary for launch. Zuckerberg allegedly chooses to be compensated in the form of sweat equity.