Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is a man of talent and innovation, and is now reaching more people now than ever. Zuckerberg started Facebook as a way to help his peers to communicate, and his little project has blossomed into a primary means of staying in touch, keeping people informed, and raking in advertisement money. Zucks has taken the world by storm once, and he has looked to do it again to reassert Facebook’s dominance as questions loom about the tech giant’s future.
People have always thought of Zuckerberg as a smart guy, seeing that he and his team gave people a platform to stay more socially in-tune than ever. The social network was not something that he invented, but he improved upon it, giving anyone in the world with access to internet through their computer or smartphone the ability to connect with almost any other individual in the world. Facebook’s emergence as the number one social network happened some time ago, and as happens with any other number one, other companies have come out to take its place, just like Facebook took MySpace’s place as the preferred social network.
Companies like Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat are more fun and more free for many users, especially in the younger generation, as the guidelines are not as stiff. To the dismay of many would-be Facebook users, “FB” requires a user to use his or her real name. Most of the time, people seen using aliases and fake names are not reprimanded unless there have been multiple reports made to the company, but knowing that regulations like these exist is enough to keep certain people away. People instead turn to networks that allow people to have as much or as little presence as they want. The experience never dulls for these users, because there is always a new trend and interactions between users and people they may not have ever met are still okay in the network’s culture. These services offer users anonymity, and don’t have as many easy-to-break regulations. Although Instagram has actually been bought by Facebook, the trend for many social media users to leave or never even download Facebook at all puts a hole in the company’s pocket and doubts in the heads of many investors.
This generation of teenagers has been the largest demographic to pull away from the social media tyranny of Facebook. Many in this group have cited their reasons for not using “The Book” as having an issue with being directly connected to adult family and friends. When the teen posts a funny meme, or a status about something bad happening in their day, usually the first people to like or comment on the status are Mom, Dad, Grandma, and Aunt Susie. Teens do not like that, and the likes or comments the teen looks for do not count when it is family giving the social media attention.
Instead, today’s teens look for networks like Twitter, where there are trending topics, a lesser likelihood of “trolling,” and a username that provides a form of anonymity. When using Snapchat, a user can communicate directly with friends, in a forum where the world does not get to see it. There is space for one-on-one, but at the same time, all the user’s friends are available in one place to message a quick pic that will only be displayed for a few seconds. Many users of social networks prefer a more anonymous form of communicating, which has been a thorn in Facebook’s side.
To combat the ever-present call for Facebook to loosen up its regulations or provide more of an anonymous experience, Zucks’ company has launched a new app called “Rooms” on Wednesday. Rooms will take many users back to nostalgia in a chatroom-like experience, where users can build rooms based on hobbies or interests. A person could create a username, dedicate a room to the Zombie Apocalypse or whatever topic of choice, and have friends join him there in conversation. Users are also able to post pictures and videos, and nothing posted inside the chatroom will be shared on Facebook. Providing this new service while still looking for ways to advertise to more networks, Facebook Founder Zuckerberg will reach more people than ever before.
This type of service takes many of this generation’s main participants in internet culture back to the 90’s, when one started a conversation with someone in a different part of the country or of the world, and simply asked “A.S.L?” Zuckerberg would be giving people a way to stay connected, but at the same time feel a bit more private with the information they choose to share. “Rooms” gives people flexibility that they otherwise do not experience with Facebook.
One thing that forces many people to respect Zuckerberg is that with recent moves, he is showing a commitment to continue to connect people. Much to the befuddlement of people who keep up with the young billionaire, Zucks’ gave a speech in China this week in Mandarin. He has spent free time in the past several years learning the language, knowing that China may be Facebook’s next largest market, with over one billion people living in the country.
According to some sources, the Mandarin spoken was not great, but the fact that he learned the language well enough to deliver an entire presentation in the language shows that Zuckerberg’s work may be something that genuinely comes from the heart. By many accounts, Mandarin is the hardest language on Earth to learn, so Zucks’ has earned some major respect. Zuckerberg has shown the world why Facebook has been so successful. At the end of the day, this company’s founder’s heart is with connecting people, which will allow Facebook to reach more people than ever as the world of social networks continues to evolve.
By LaBaron Jackson
Photo By LPS.1 – Creative Commons