Facebook celebrates its 15-year anniversary today
On Feb. 4, Facebook Inc celebrates its 15-year anniversary. PaySpace Magazine offers you the chance to take a look at Facebook’s history, some interesting facts, and its major milestones, from the very beginning to the moment when FB became the world’s largest social network.
History and interesting facts
1. Mark Zuckerberg didn’t spend much time making up the name for his project. He recalled his schooldays, and how the school he studied in used to give its pupils a special handbook with photos, addresses, and phone numbers of other pupils. «The Photo Address Book» was the full name of this book. However, guys used to shorten the name and call it – just «The Facebook». «The» part was removed by Mark only in 2005, after he bought the domain name facebook.com (it cost him as much as $200,000). Blue is the major color of the site, and it is for a good reason. Mark suffers from deuteranopia (color blindness). Thus, he’s got some problems with distinguishing between red and green, but he clearly distinguishes blue.
Mark’s project became a publicly available social media site on 26 September 2006 (before this date it was a social network for students’ internal use only).
2. Facebook was surrounded by scandals and appeals from the very beginning of its launch. The Harvard administration did not approve the idea of the creation of an internal network, citing sensitive data privacy. Zuckerberg didn’t give up and hacked the university network, which gave him access to the photos and private data of the students. On 10 September 2004 brothers Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss and Divya Narendra accused Mark of deceit. These three students claimed that Mark promised them to help with their social network project, which was supposed to be called HarvardConnection.com. They also said that he has just used their concept and ideas while he was working on his own “competing product”. This case went to trial, but Zuckerberg was able to handle this issue. In April 2005 Mark had an active process of appeal and judicial review with Eduardo Saverin, who was the major investor of the project at the design stage. Zuckerberg wanted to decrease Eduardo’s share in the share capital from 34% to 0.03%. Saverin, apparently, wanted more. The tribunal went on to support the request of Eduardo, but only partly. Therefore, Saverin had a 5% share, but it was quite enough for him to become a billionaire.
3. On 18 May 2012 Facebook went in public (IPO) on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). The company decided to sell a share for $38. They managed to sell more than 420M Facebook shares, and they raised $18.4B. It was the world’s second largest tech-firm IPO worldwide (Visa was able to raise $19.7B in 2008). All the investors were fond of Mark and his network. However, exactly three months later (18 August 2012) euphoria was replaced by solid disappointment. Facebook’s price per share decreased to $19. Zuckerberg was accused of fraud and intended overestimation of the share price. Today, Mark can be considered as a lucky businessman, since he has never had to pay out huge compensation.
4. The student project turned a simple guy into the youngest billionaire ever. In March 2010 «Forbes» included Mark in the list of the richest people in the world (Zuckerberg was only 25). Nowadays Mark’s net worth is $55.2B, and he is in the Forbes top 10 list. Nevertheless, he still wears jeans and a t-shirt (or plaid shirt), and sneakers (sometimes slippers). Mark drives a Volkswagen Golf GT.
5. In December 2010 Zuckerberg claimed that he joined «The Giving Pledge». It is a charity campaign founded by Warren Buffet and Bill Gates. They inspire wealthy people from all over the planet to give no less than half of their capital to philanthropy (during their lifetime or after death).
6. Mark Zuckerberg is married to his old friend Priscilla Chan. The couple married on 19 May 2012. They invited friends, but they didn’t say that it was a wedding party. They announced that it was a party to mark Priscilla’s MD-PhD. Some of the friends strongly believed that the party was about Facebook’s successful IPO. But eventually, guests appeared to be at the wedding ceremony. Mark and Priscilla have two daughters.
7. Facebook is not the first social media site. Some other social networks were launched before FB, but MySpace was considered to be the most popular one. Nonetheless, this network is “barely alive” nowadays (as well as its nearest competitor Hi5). But Facebook (many people believe that Facebook was the one that pushed MySpace and others out of market) is still #1, despite all the scandals related to personal data integrity and others.
8. Facebook is continuously accused of different violations. The most popular disruptions are spamming and illegal personal data proceedings. We all remember when Edward Snowden revealed highly classified information from NSA. Thus, the illegal providing of access to personal accounts (pages) to the American secret services joined these accusations. Facebook also does not feel obliged to notify users of the deletion of their accounts, which makes it impossible to prevent personal data destruction. And this is hardly a complete list of claims against Facebook.
Let’s take a look back at the most significant milestones from the world’s leading social media network.
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