Beating out other famous names like Carl Crawford of the Red Sox, Facebook co founder and Harvard dropout Mark Zuckerberg was named the Person of the Year for the year 2010 by Time Magazine. Time chooses a Person of the Year to commemorate someone who made the most notable impact during that year. In 2008 it was then President Elect Barack Obama; in 2004 it was George W Bush who had just won a hard fought reelection campaign. Zuckerberg is the youngest billionaire on the planet, with a net worth said to be approaching seven billion dollars, mostly from his share of ownership in Facebook.
The Social Network
Facebook has been increasing in popularity for a few years now, but the founder of the website was not such a public figure until this past year. A new movie came out portraying the way Facebook was founded at the Harvard dorms. It was a film that did not entirely paint a positive picture of Zuckerberg. He was pictured as ambitious and willing to do anything to get to the top, even at the expense of unfriending others. Normal broad form insurance subscribers may not be able to fathom what it must be like to have so much money, but we can all appreciate the never ending drama that social media represents, and the ways it brings too much information into our lives on a constant basis.
Zuckerberg and his creation probably cost businesses across the country billions in productivity because people have to update their status every time they refill their coffee cup or go to the vending machine. His influence is immense all across the earth, with an amazing 500 million members interconnected in countries all over the globe. And that might be what is so impressive more than anything else about Zuckerberg. This idea that started out as something to do at Harvard, and then the other Ivy League schools, has become a part of daily life for millions.
Checking my Facebook Status
Instead of obsessively checking our email on the hour, we now look at that once in the morning when we arrive at the office and peek at our Facebook profile every 15 minutes to see if anyone likes our status and to check to see if we have any more new friends yet. Zuckerberg and his social media aren't so much social as anti social. This is what email was a decade ago: a way to avoid calling people or worse yet, seeing them face to face. Now Zuckerberg has given computer hipsters a high school reunion so they never have to go to the real one.
Mark Zuckerberg came up with a platform for something that no one knew they needed until they had it. That is the essence of a great idea. It's like the cell phone craze all over again. There are still people signing on all over the place, and the world gets less and less accomplished per capita with every new friend connection made. But no one will ever deny that reading about your old buddy's weekend with his kids is more fun than actually working.
Zuckerberg has brought to us a different kind of connectedness. Facebook is superior to cell phones and email because it is even less personal. We can feel good that we have hundreds of friends without ever actually speaking a word to any of them. The world has changed since this website was created, and daily routines and even mindsets for millions have been impacted. Mark Zuckerberg is visionary if he knew what he was getting into back in his old Harvard days.