Two sides of the Facebook coin

I just finished reading the full transcript of Mark Zuckerberg's testimony concerning the 'trust breach' that happened earlier this year. It is a lesson on how to write a memo. It's clear and concise. And let's be honest, it's well written. We can almost « feel » empathy for the visibly shaken CEO. Anyways, it's a convincing and charming statement.

I paraphrase what I think is an important lesson:

Facebook is an idealistic and optimistic company. For most of our existence, we focused on all the good that connecting people can bring. It’s not enough to just connect people, we have to make sure those connections are positive. It’s not enough to just give people a voice, we have to make sure people aren’t using it to hurt people or spread misinformation. It’s not enough to give people control of their information, we have to make sure developers they’ve given it to are protecting it too. Across the board, we have a responsibility to not just build tools, but to make sure those tools are used for good.

As a growing company, you must be taking a broad enough view of your responsibility. When you start, you can avoid thinking about that because you need to survive, grow and get to the next step. But as you grow bigger and your responsibility extends, you realize there are often two sides of a coin. What makes you great can make you weak. What makes you smart can make you dumb. What makes people love you can make people hate you.

I started Facebook when I was in college. We’ve come a long way since then.

Yes, we've come a long way since then.