Mark Zuckerberg is an incredibly famous billionaire because he created a social media site everyone and their mother still uses today and, you know, he had that weird movie made about his life that made him look horrible. But more than that, the tech genius bought and developed other companies to complement his Facebook empire like Instagram and WhatsApp.
If you don’t have a Facebook-owned app on your phone, are you even living? Here are 10 things you don’t (but should) know about Mark Zuckerberg.
- As a senior in high school, Mark showed aptitude for all things tech and created an app with his friend called Synapse Media Player. The app was an MP3 player that automatically kept track of your favorite songs and then made playlists off those preferences. It was an early Spotify that nearly landed him a cushy job at Microsoft. He decided to go to college instead, which is unfortunate for the music industry. They could have saved themselves a lot of pain if they’d jumped on the streaming bandwagon earlier. But with all your friends sharing music illegally, who really needed streaming services?
- In 2010 a film came out about Mark’s claim to fame, the invention of Facebook. The movie, The Social Network, was written by Aaron Sorkin and, according to Mark, included several things that never happened. Mark was upset by the on-screen portrayal of his life and said in a town hall Q&A in 2014 that the film hurt his feelings. Sorkin apologized for upsetting Mark but claimed he doesn’t regret writing the movie how he did.
- Mark is red-green colorblind. The color he sees the best is blue, which is why Facebook’s website and mobile app are predominantly blue. Mark was quoted by the The New Yorker saying, “Blue is the richest color for me. I can see all of blue.” And Congress can see all of you, Mark. Or, they think they can.
- Mark has turned down several offers to sell Facebook. He has received around ten offers to date, including a NYC financier only four months after Facebook, then known as TheFacebook.com, went live. He has also been pursued by Google, Microsoft, Viacom, and Yahoo. He has refused to sell at every turn, even when the company’s executives urged him to, which probably angered some money-hungry exec’s. But when you’re Mark Zuckerberg, you don’t have to care about what other people want you to do.
- @finkd is Mark’s personal Twitter account, and he currently has 451k followers. Unfortunately for them, Mark hasn’t been active on the site since 2012. After 18 posts in 2009 and one post in 2012, he finished his brief Twitter life with an urge for people to “tell your congressmen you want them to be pro-internet.” There was a linked Facebook page which has since become defunct, so we’ll never know what on earth he meant. Is anyone anti-internet?
- In 2016 Mark set a goal of running 365 miles in one year as a New Year’s resolution. Impressively, he completed his goal mid-summer. He claims his fastest mile at that time was 5:53. He started controversy when he was pictured running in China in front of Tiananmen Square, a famous landmark and symbol of communism. Other goals he’s made in the past include learning Mandarin and reading a new book every two weeks.
- Mark is famous for wearing his iconic grey T-shirt every day. He reasons that he wants to make his life simple so he can focus on making Facebook better. What he’s really doing is making himself easily recognizable on the streets. Maybe not the best plan for a billionaire? His shirt reportedly costs between $300 and $400, but there is a knock-off brand for people who want his style but don’t have his budget.
- As portrayed in The Social Network, Mark was in several legal disputes, most famously with the Winklevoss twins. The twins accused him of stealing the idea for Facebook from them. They eventually took him to court and settled in 2008 at over $60 million. And because the spoiled rich kids don’t know when to say when, they were back at it in 2011 and won a further settlement in an appeals court making their sum $160 million.
- 2. In 2011, Mark made headlines by breaking into Forbes’ Top 20 list of the richest people in the U.S. His estimated value at the time was $17.5 billion. By 2016, he jumped to #16 on the list with a value of $34.5 billion. In early 2019, his net worth was around $64.1 billion. Mark gained wealth primarily through Facebook by opening the site to advertisers, much to the frustration of its legions of users who have far less money in their bank accounts now, and by buying other companies that he grew and developed.
- In 2003 Mark created FaceMash while at Harvard. FaceMash was a “hot or not” website that rated dorm students based on their looks and caused controversy among his peers. Days after launching, Harvard shut it down claiming it breached individual privacy and security. Mark later took the code from FaceMash and used it as the foundation for TheFacebook.com. During a meeting with the House Energy and Commerce Committee in 2018, Mark was questioned about FaceMash and had to explain to Rep. Billy Long that the website was created as a prank and is no longer active. Because that wasn’t already obvious…