Book Review: The Facebook Effect – The Inside Story of the Company That Is Connecting the World
Facebook is now the king of social networking leaving behind it competitors like Myspace, Hi5 and Orkut way behind as the company grows at an unbelievable pace. Therefore it is the perfect time to bring forth a detailed study on the social networking behemoth! Its history and state of affairs. It has gained half a billion users and this number is still growing while also gaining a lot of private funding. Facebook is unquestionably the most important social utility to ever hit the web.
In the book “the Facebook Effect”, former fortune magazine technology editor David Kirkpatrick studies the structure of the company that has gained a strong foothold in the networking sector. He delves into the causes and the inner workings that made Facebook the current Media giant that it is. All the famous stories – from the “borrowing” (stealing?) of the original concept from ConnectU and houseSYSTEM, to the fever-pitched growth, through early stage investor meetings, the move from Harvard to Palo Alto.
The book seems to have received favourable support from most of the big names associated with the company that is still very young. There are multiple interviews conducted with Mark Zuckerberg himself. From all these insights, David speaks of the young company that went through all the turmoil that every young company faces while still remaining true to its goal of making society open, while creating and maintaining the “social graph”.
He also gives his take on why some of the features and applications became a raving success like Farmville and Mafia Wars while some turned into utter failures like Beacon. Other issues are also explained like privacy, advertising vs. user experience that are related to the applications themselves.
The author also delves into the life of Mark Zuckerberg in relation to his company Facebook. He seems to have changed himself when the investors wanted more maturity infused into the company. For example he states that when he found a girlfriend, he actually negotiated 100 minutes of time in a week for her. That is how detailed the book is about Facebook and everything related to it.
The revolutionary change in social behaviour that emanates from a 19 year old student is the Facebook effect.