What is Facebook?

Facebook was once a friend network. A friend network alone. It was "Thefacebook" then. It was the year 2004. Initially only for students at Harvard University, it slowly opened up to more schools a year later, subsequently opening to anyone 13 years and above and gaining a News Feed of sorts while ditching the 'the' prefix to become just Facebook. By 2010 Facebook was almost everywhere. It had become 'the' social network.

The place to share, communicate, interact with brands, celebrities and other influencers, read news, jot down notes, track events happening around you, transfer money, buy and sell items, deliver stuff to your doorstep, purchase tickets, store photos, stream live videos (not to mention its endless attempts at snapchatification via Stories), find out who your local, state and federal representatives are and reach out to them, and even raise funds for yourself or on behalf of others. This brings me to the very question - What is Facebook? Is it 'the' Internet? Is it trying to be the one-stop shop for anything and everything?

I am not saying it shouldn't (Google, Amazon, Microsoft and Apple are doing the same thing; it's all about the ecosystem you see?) but it's perhaps wise to read a page or two from their Little Red Book to make sense of why they are doing what they are doing: "Remember, people don't use Facebook because they like us. They use it because they like their friends... If we don't create the thing that kills Facebook, someone else will. 'Embracing Change' isn't enough. It has to be so hardwired into who we are that even talking about it seems redundant. The internet is not a friendly place. Things that don't stay relevant don't even get the luxury of leaving ruins. They disappear." Some mission it is, is it not?

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