Facebook is 15 years old. After 15 years of development, Facebook has grown from a college social networking site to a giant. Wired magazine has a comprehensive inventory of Facebook’s current situation, spanning nine major areas, including more than 100 products and features. The original title is “ALL THE TIMES FACEBOOK MOVED FAST AND SOMETIMES BROKE THINGS ” article compiled by the krypton 36, hoping to inspire you.
Fifteen years ago, Harvard University student Mark Zuckerberg created TheFacebook.com, a social network for college students that looks a lot like Friendster or Myspace.
A few months later, he moved the company from the dorm to Silicon Valley and began to expand to other universities.
At the beginning, Zuckerberg did not take his role too seriously. Written on his first business card: “I’m CEO … bitch.”
After 15 years, about one-third of the world’s people use Facebook’s apps every month. The company acquired or beat most of its major competitors, including Instagram, WhatsApp and Snapchat.
As far as monthly active users are concerned, it is now equivalent to about 7 Twitter.
Nearly half of Facebook’s news is where millions of non-profit organizations raise donations, is a state-sponsored publicity venue, and is where people announce engagement, have children, and even divorce.
It may be the largest repository of personal information in human history.
Facebook is more than just an advertising-driven social network and information platform; it is also a second-hand commodity market, virtual reality headset manufacturer, VPN company and satellite developer.
The company has attracted some talented artificial intelligence researchers and developed one of the most powerful facial recognition algorithms.
According to data from the investment website Crunchbase, the company has annexed more than 70 companies, most of which are companies that produce technology software.
Facebook also created a lot of wealth for its more than 35,000 employees: the median salary in 2017 exceeded $240,000 (approximately 1.63 million yuan), but this figure does not include the company’s large number of contractors.
As Facebook turns 15 years old, it is facing some of the biggest challenges, including the upcoming Federal Trade Commission investigation and regulation from Congress.
To celebrate this milestone, we will make a comprehensive review of Facebook’s development.
Here’s everything that this social networking company is involved with. Facebook did not respond to requests for comment from reporters.
It was not until Zuckerberg purchased the domain name for $200,000 in 2005 that TheFacebook.com became Facebook.com .
It was not until 2011 that the company purchased the shorter website fb.com from the United States Agriculture Bureau. The deal cost $8.5 million in social networking.
In the year before the acquisition, Facebook bought the patents of its early rival, Friendster, for about $40 million.
Initially, Facebook only displays the user’s profile.
But in September 2006, the company launched the News Feed , which triggered widespread user attention to privacy issues.
(Zuckerberg tells the user “Calm down, take a deep breath.” On the second day of the feature release. After 24 hours, he admitted that he “really messed up this thing”, but the News Feed is still there.)
In the same year, Facebook launched the Notes feature, and like other parts of the Internet, began to tap into the blog.
In early 2007, the company launched Facebook Mobile , which allows users to access social networking sites via their mobile phones; now this is the primary way people use social networks.
In 2008, the company released an iOS app for the iPhone, which was still relatively new at the time, including location sharing for discovering friends, and ultimately targeted advertising.
In 2011, the company launched Facebook for SIM , which allows mobile users who do not purchase data traffic to access Facebook through paid subscriptions.
Also in 2007, Facebook has created a classified ads portal site similar to Craigslist’s Marketplace , before becoming today’s in-app features, this portal has been developed several iterations.
Around this time, the company launched the Facebook Platform , which provides developers with a range of tools and products to build applications for the Facebook ecosystem.
(By 2009, Zynga has become the most famous developer on Facebook, with millions of people playing its popular game FarmVille.)
In May 2008, Facebook launched Facebook Connect , called “the next iteration of the Facebook platform,” which allows users to log in to other applications and websites using their Facebook credentials.
Facebook claims that by showing users which friends have already signed up for an account, developers can add a “social environment” to their website.
In 2009, Facebook introduced its most iconic feature: the Like button.
In 2016, Facebook expanded the “Like” feature and launched the “Reactions” feature, including “Wow”, “Haha”, “Sad”, “Angry” and “Love”.
In 2014, Facebook launched the Facebook Safety Check , a feature that was activated in disasters and mass attacks, where people can let family and friends know they are safe.
In 2016, the company released a stand-alone Events app and launched a Facebook- based business communication platform like Slack (later renamed Workplace).
Facebook Media and Games
Facebook Photos debuted in 2005. There is no limit to the number of images a user can upload, and it quickly becomes one of the most popular features of the site.
Two years later, Facebook Video came out with the slogan “Your friend’s video is very interesting.” In 2011, Facebook partnered with Skype to develop a Video Calling feature.
Launched in 2015, Facebook Live was initially targeted at certified users and was later paid to news organizations to develop live content, including a famous watermelon explosion video on BuzzFeed.
Facebook Live was scrutinized after being used for live suicides and killings. At about the same time, Facebook introduced the 360 Degree Videos feature. By 2016, users can upload and view 360 Degree Photos .
In 2017, with the launch of Facebook Watch , Facebook continued to enter the video field, a video-on-demand service that featured original content developed by partners such as Refinery29, Univision and Fox News.
At the beginning of 2018, Facebook Watch Party , a website that shared the viewing experience for the group, debuted. Later that year, Facebook announced that several news programs developed in collaboration with media such as CNN and BuzzFeed will be shown on Facebook Watch.
Also in 2018, Facebook launched Lip Sync Live , a karaoke feature in Facebook Live.
The company also introduced some other interactive video plugins such as Polling and Gamification .
When Facebook didn’t respond to privacy scandals, it spent a lot of time trying to attract gamers into its platform last year.
The company has won exclusive streaming rights to multiple eSports leagues from the ESL Alliance .
Subsequently, it launched the Gaming Creator Level Up Program , which aims to attract users to Facebook Live by helping them expand their fan base, make money and attract fans (rather than Amazon’s Twitch).
Facebook also launched its own dedicated live broadcast site, Fb.gg , similar to Twitch , and began funding some of the game’s big Vs.
Some of Facebook’s game partners can also join the Patreon-based fan monthly subscription program, which is currently being tested.
Facebook also launched its own virtual currency, Facebook Stars , each worth 1 cent, and users can give it to their favorite game anchor as a tip. (The company draws a portion of the cost from each Stars purchased by the user.)
Although it is too early to determine the fate of various live broadcasts, Facebook has recently faced accusations that it used to encourage children to spend a lot of money playing games without their parents’ permission.
In 2015, Facebook launched Instant Articles , a feature that allows users to read news articles on specific websites without leaving the social network.
After the 2016 US presidential election, Facebook was criticized for spreading the wrong information, and then it began working with external fact-checking agencies to combat the wrong information.
At the same time, it announced the Facebook Journalism Project to promote collaboration with the media industry.
Facebook Messenger, Instagram, WhatsApp, etc.
Facebook’s initial communication feature was Inbox , a Facebook-based email client with messages linked via threads (real-time communication is not possible).
As the site matures, private communications become more and more important. In 2008, the company launched Facebook Chat , an instant messaging service similar to AIM and Gchat.
In February 2011, Facebook acquired the group communication service Beluga and released the independent chat application Messenger later that year .
In 2015, the company added personal-to-person payment services to Messenger.
Facebook Messenger Lite is a streamlined app designed for emerging markets and was released in 2016.
A year later, Facebook launched Messenger Kids , targeting only users around the age of six.
In 2012, Facebook spent $1 billion to acquire the photo-sharing app Instagram , and has since launched other features, including Instagram Direct , Instagram Stories, and video streaming IGTV .
Two years after the acquisition of Instagram, Facebook spent $19 billion to acquire the private instant messaging service WhatsApp , and launched the Stories feature in the service.
A feature like Snapchat entered Facebook in 2018.
It has recently been reported that Facebook plans to merge infrastructures that support communications services such as WhatsApp, Instagram, Direct and Facebook Messenger.
Over the years, Facebook has acquired or developed several applications and tools that are very similar to competitors.
For example, the cloned version of TikTok, Lasso , also has a veritable meme application LOL.
In 2018, the company launched Collection , a Pinterest-like application. It started testing Dating , a feature in its main application, similar to other dating services like Tinder and Bumble. (Currently not online in most regions.)
When Zuckerberg announced the launch of Facebook Ads and Brand Pages in 2007, he declared that “From today, the advertising for the next 100 years will be different.”
He is not wrong. Most of Facebook’s revenue ($55 billion last year) came from marketers who asked them to lock users based on the user information they collected.
Facebook IQ , the company’s digital research department, provides “powerful, actionable insights into consumer behavior, marketing, and measurement.”
According to The Intercept, Facebook wants to use artificial intelligence to predict the future behavior of consumers.
Also in 2007, Facebook launched Facebook Social Ads and Facebook Beacon .
The latter sends the user’s activity information on other websites to Facebook for ad targeting.
Facebook Beacon quickly became the subject of privacy litigation and was shut down in 2009.
Facebook uses countless other tools to track users’ online and offline activities, including Facebook Pixel , a tracker embedded in millions of websites.
In 2015, Facebook also distributed Facebook Bluetooth Beacons to businesses for free . These physical devices can monitor when certain Facebook users visit their restaurant or store.
Although the company’s request for the beacon’s page has disappeared, Facebook claims to provide advertisers with a way to calculate store visits using “customer’s Wi-Fi and Bluetooth signatures” and “satellite imagery and map data.”
In 2012, Facebook began showing ads as Featured Posts in the News Feed.
Soon after, the company launched Facebook Exchange , which is no longer available , which is a platform for advertisers to bid on real-time ad placement.
In 2018, social networks launched their own influential market brand Collabs Manager .
At the same time, Facebook launched a political advertising tool that allows users to view ads from political advertisers.
This change occurred after Facebook discovered that Russian propaganda agencies purchased more than 3,500 ads for Americans as part of a fake publicity campaign around the 2016 US election.
Ads created through Facebook’s Ad Manager app or platform can be displayed to users on Facebook or Instagram in Stories, online posts, or other means.
As part of the Facebook Blueprint e-learning system, the company also offers free marketing and business courses online.
People who want to be marketers want to “train their Facebook marketing expertise,” and even get Facebook Blueprint certification.
Facebook Connection Program
In 2013, Zuckerberg announced that Facebook wanted to help connect 5 billion people who could not access the Internet at the time, mostly from developing countries.
He estimated that the project would take 5 to 10 years.
Facebook quickly created Internet.org , which included the Connectivity Lab , where researchers connected unconnected locations via drones, satellites and lasers.
Through this lab, Facebook built Aquila , a huge solar drone that aims to bring the Internet connection back to Earth. In 2018, two years after the first public test flight, it was permanently grounded.
The Connectivity Lab also experimented with satellites , including a satellite designed to provide Internet access to sub-Saharan Africa, which exploded on the SpaceX rocket in 2016.
Last year, Wired magazine reported that Facebook plans to launch a new satellite called Athena in 2019 .
The Connectivity Lab is also working to create maps to help understand where the network needs improvement.
It also developed OpenCellular devices, a device that can be tied to trees or streetlights, functions like a microcell station, and Terragraph and ARIES wireless antennas to improve Internet access in rural and urban areas.
In 2015, the company created Express Wi-Fi , a local enterprise-hosted router project where nearby people can use Internet hotspots through routers.
Internet.org’s most controversial access project is the Free Basics service, which was launched in 2013 to provide free access to a limited set of websites and applications for people in more than 60 countries, including Facebook.
In 2016, Free Basics services were banned in India as part of a ruling to support network neutrality.
In the same year, Facebook launched the Telecom Infra Project , a partnership with more than 20 companies to improve the Internet infrastructure.
This move echoes the Open Compute Project , an open source initiative launched by Facebook in 2011 to transform the hardware used in computer data centers.
Most importantly, Facebook also has some undersea internet cables .
Facebook Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality
In 2014, Facebook spent $3 billion to acquire virtual reality company Oculus , which currently produces three headsets: Oculus Rift , Oculus Go and Gear VR .
( Oculus Quest will soon be available , an all-in-one gaming system that doesn’t need to be connected to a computer.)
Together with Samsung, Oculus launched the Samsung Gear VR in 2015.
Oculus Studios primarily publishes and invests in virtual reality games and experiences, while Oculus Story Studio focuses on virtual reality stories before closing in 2017.
Also in 2017, Facebook launched two virtual reality cameras for capturing spherical video, and announced the design plans for the two cameras through the coding site Github.
In addition, Facebook introduced the Camera Effects platform, a set of tools developers use to create augmented reality applications.
At about the same time, Facebook released Facebook Spaces , a virtual reality social network.
Facebook AI or Facebook Artificial Intelligence
Facebook has invested heavily in the Applied Machine Learning Group , whose engineers have helped automate many parts of their vast platform.
The company’s artificial intelligence research team attracts top scholars in the field of artificial intelligence and regularly publishes world-renowned research.
Artificial intelligence can now help detect malicious comments on Instagram, determine which posts appear in your Facebook News Feed, and make sponsored posts more “relevant.”
This technology is also used to identify potential offending posts for thousands of content managers on social networks.
For example, the company uses an algorithm called Rosetta to analyze text in photos and videos, and the algorithm alerts if a content admin believes that a cultural Meme violates Facebook’s hate speech policy.
Facebook also uses artificial intelligence for more controversial purposes, such as judging whether a person has a suicidal tendency.
In December 2010, Facebook began using facial recognition technology to suggest users to tag photos.
In 2014, the company said its DeepFace algorithm became as accurate as humans in recognizing faces.
In 2017, the company expanded its face recognition feature to alert users when they uploaded images, even if they didn’t tag them.
At about the same time, Facebook said it is using photo matching technology to stop the spread of revenge porn.
Facebook also uses artificial intelligence to build automated chat bots .
In 2017, when some news organizations mistakenly reported that their robots had started talking to each other in their own language, a lot of panic was caused.
In fact, Facebook researchers have begun to build robots that can be negotiated with people, but these robots were just gibberish at first.
In 2018, Facebook’s artificial intelligence researchers announced that they have partnered with New York University to develop more effective diagnostic techniques for magnetic resonance imaging. Even artificial intelligence has been built to build other artificial intelligence.
Facebook Consumer Hardware
In 2013, Facebook released the so-called Facebook Phone , also known as HTC First.
This Android device comes preloaded with Facebook Home , which encourages users to post on Facebook more frequently.
Despite the fanfare, the phone did not take off; AT&T once sold the device for 99 cents.
In October last year, Facebook again tried to enter the hardware field with Facebook Portal(a smart home device with a camera), which was released when the company faced a series of privacy scandals.
According to reports, Facebook’s hardware design team is also developing an augmented reality glasses that may be launched sometime in the next few years.
More Facebook Projects
In 2013, Facebook acquired Israel’s VPN manufacturer Onavo , which reportedly used Onavo to collect data from popular emerging applications in order to clone or purchase them.
The company also used Onavo’s technology to develop the Facebook Research app, which pays users about $20 a month to share their data with social networks.
Onavo and Facebook Research were recently removed from the iPhone for violating Apple’s privacy rules (they are still available on Android).
Onavo also introduced the Bolt app, which can lock other applications using pin codes or fingerprints. Later, because the app caused privacy issues, Facebook shut it down.
Also in 2013, Facebook entered the non-profit sector through Donate , a feature that donated to non-profit organizations. Later, it developed a set of tools for charities; more than 1 million organizations now accept donations through social networks.
Facebook hosts the Facebook Social Good Forum every year . In this regard, the company introduced features designed to help promote blood donation.
In 2018, the company launched Blood Donations on Facebook to make it easier for users in certain countries to find blood donation sites.
In 2017, Facebook’s experimental department, Building 8, announced plans to create a device that would read your thoughts . The team is also working on an armband that lets people hear sound through the skin .
According to reports, before the Cambridge analysis scandal, Building 8 researchers had planned to negotiate a data sharing agreement with the hospital. This project was subsequently cancelled.
In addition, Facebook operates the Bug Bounty Program , a startup incubator called Station F in Paris , and a career development site called ” Learn with Facebook .”
The company also facilitated digital skills training for small businesses through its community-assisted project, and in 2016 purchased the popular publisher analysis tool CrowdTangle . There is also Jarvis , the virtual assistant of Mark Zuckerberg.
According to reports, Facebook is also developing a cryptocurrency for WhatsApp .
Other advances have been made in the field of encryption. In May last year, David Marcus, the former head of Messenger, turned to lead a new project focused on using blockchain technology to serve Facebook .
Recently, the company acquired the team behind the blockchain startup Chainspace.
Many Facebook innovations have died, and this is not uncommon for a company that is trying to innovate in many areas.
Some of these projects are almost a replica of competitors, while others are quietly eliminated due to privacy or other issues.
In 2009, Facebook briefly tried a way of managing users , and people could vote on what policies the site would take. But only a small percentage of the 200 million users at the time participated, and the project was quickly abandoned.
Facebook acquired Karma , a social gift app in 2012 , but soon launched its own e-commerce platform, Facebook Gifts .
After this failure, Facebook turned to Facebook Card , a large gift card that can be used by various physical retailers.
A version of Facebook Card still exists, but only for Facebook related purchases.
In 2014, Facebook launched the Trending Topics feature to showcase some viral news stories.
Originally edited by humans, they were accused of being biased; editors were replaced by an algorithm, which led to the appearance of mischief and false news reports.
Facebook tried to reinvent this feature, but it ended up shutting down last year.
Over the years, Facebook has launched several Snapchat competitors, but none of them have succeeded.
These include Poke in 2012, Slingshot and Bolt in 2014 , and Lifestage in 2017 .
Also in 2014, the company launched Facebook Paper , a newsreading app that is basically a Facebook version of Pocket, but was closed in 2016.
Soon after, Facebook also closed its own independent Groups app.
In 2017, when the anonymous gossip application Sarahah caused a sensation among teenagers, Facebook acquired the gossip application tbh and quickly shut it down.
At the same time, it closed the 2014 acquisition of the contact application Hello and the fitness app Moves .
Other abandoned Facebook projects include:
- One of the Messengers is a virtual assistant of M ;
- Anonymous forum application Rooms ;
- Notify application that sends notifications ;
- An application called i’m Voting created in collaboration with CNN ;
- a Google Photos competitor named Moments ;
- Facebook Lite application;
- Virtual currency Facebook Credits ;
- Vine competitor Riff ;
In addition, there is the Facebook War Room , known as the media darling, which monitors the wrong information during the 2018 US midterm elections and the Brazilian presidential election.