February 4th 2019 is Facebook’s 15th anniversary. Facebook has gone from a college campus connection website, to the social media network. 2018 gave it the image of corporate greed hungry for consumer data.
Facebook has oddly seemed to mature somewhat like a human would. It’s early years it got its footing, slightly mirroring its predecessors like MySpace and Friendster. Now in its teen years, the platform is defiant about any wrongdoing and thinks itself invincible.
Facebook does have plans for its future. Facebook’s April 12th, 2016 F8 Developers conference had Facebook’s CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, lay out a 10-year plan for the giant social media platform. The 10-year roadmap delved right into 21st century sci-fi fantasies with talk of VR/AR, Drones, and AI being integrated right into the web of Facebook’s products. Not stuff typically associated with what we knew of social media in 2016.
It’s hub for business, entertainment, event planning, catching up with friends, and getting daily news. Some parts of the world even have Facebook and the internet as a synonymous term.
Mark Zuckerberg made a post in honor of 15 years of Facebook. In it, he says “At the time, it struck me that there were many websites to find almost anything — books, music, news, information, businesses — except for what actually matters most: people.” This is largely subjective as there were arguably many social media sites in the early 21st century prior to Facebook.
He goes into how social media also has reshaped the power balances in our society. “At the same time, there is another force at play as well. As networks of people replace traditional hierarchies and reshape many institutions in our society — from government to business to media to communities and more — there is a tendency of some people to lament this change, to overly emphasize the negative, and in some cases to go so far as saying the shift to empowering people in the ways the internet and these networks do is mostly harmful to society and democracy.”
It’s not secret that social media has worked in many positive ways, including Facebook but if the negatives are largely ignored by CEOs, then the issues we’ve seen in 2018 will only expand.