Who: Founded by Mark Zuckerberg, Eduardo Saverin, Andrew McCollum, Dustin Moskovitz and Chris Hughes.

What: Social networking service.

Where: Originally Harvard University

Why: The most prolific social networking site with over one billion active users.

When: Founded February 4, 2004.

“Move fast and break things. Unless you are breaking stuff, you are not moving fast enough.” – Mark Zuckerberg.

Facebook, or ‘thefacebook’ as it was originally known, was launched on February 4, 2004 from Mark Zuckerberg’s Harvard dorm room, after he gleaned inspiration from a program he wrote called Facemash that previous October. Restricting membership originally to Harvard students, Facebook eventually took off, and they expanded. Napster co-founder Sean Parker was drafted in as President in mid-2004, and Facebook moved to Palo Alto, California. By 2007 Facebook had an implied value of $15 billion. It was not without is controversy, however, as Zuckerberg was accused by Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss and Divya Narendra of using their idea, building a rival network whilst pretending to help them set up theirs, and settled out of court with Eduardo Saverin for an undisclosed fee after he was effectively ousted from the company. Facebook has acquired more than 40 companies, including Instagram, Oculus VR and WhatsApp for a massive $16 billion. As of January 2014 Facebook had 1.31 billion users and a market capitalization of $177.78 billion. In 2010, The Social Network, a film directed by David Fincher chronicling the early rise of Facebook, was released, starring Jesse Eisenberg as Zuckerberg, Andrew Garfield as Saverin and Justin Timberlake as Parker.

Facebook’s homepage

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