My first stint in college was way back in 2005. My biggest regret after flunking out, packing up the belongings of my dorm room into my red ford escort station wagon, and heading back to my parent’s house was not signing up for a Facebook account while I was up there. I think my priorities were a bit off back in those days, but for a short period, I not only had failed in college, I had failed in joining Zuckerberg’s future.
I didn’t have to wait back on MySpace for too long before the world was on Facebook, and I didn’t have to be an enrolled student at a state university anymore to make an account.
If anyone has reaped the total multibillion-dollar potential of a free social media network it would be the 32-year-old founder of Facebook Mark Zuckerberg.Below Quincy Larson, CEO of freecodecamp draws a stark contrast of the power a President with a term limit has, compared to the power a CEO of the biggest social media company on the Internet holds.
“Mark Zuckerberg has none of these limitations. His power flows from Facebook, the seventh largest corporation on the planet by market capitalization, of which he owns 18% of the stock and controls 60% of the voting rights.”
When I was lamenting about dropping out of my freshmen year of college and missing out on the beginning of the Facebook craze, Mark Zuckerberg (who is only two years older than me) was in silicon valley, churning out Facebook with a house full of coders. And all his hard work certainly paid off. His net worth in 2017 is less than four billion measly dollars shy of 50 billion, and he’s just getting started.
That is a lot of money for a company that gives their service away for free, and a lot of responsibility for a young CEO. The U.S. President has eight years to make a societal impact. Mark Zuckerberg has the rest of his life to help bring about social change, and with 60% control of voting rights for the social media company, he is the proverbial, Captain Kirk of the Facebook Enterprise.
With the rise of virtual reality tech, Facebook is standing in the forefront of the new technology, boldly going where no social media company has gone before. It will be up to business leaders like Zuckerberg to innovate and develop technology with the public in mind because, in a time of billion-dollar stockholders, the CEO’s are the ones who decide who eats and who starves.
For real change, we must look to the leaders of business to take a conscious effort towards fixing the mess the rise of the billionaires has created. Facebook has the capability to bring change more than any other entity foreign or domestic because Facebook has the power of the people more than ever; with the power to turn on and off anyone’s live video stream, and control what users see on their news feeds for their personal phycological research or political gain.
My hopes are that Zuckerberg uses the powers of Facebook for good social change, opposed to evil geopolitical fascism, but only time will tell how he plays his cards and who he’s playing them for.
If I would have known how popular Facebook would become and what an impact it would make on the Internet back in early 2006, I think my 19-year-old self could have felt more comfortable with the short wait for a social media network that more than likely will be around for the rest of my life.