10 Fascinating Answers From Zuck’s Q&A

Today Mark Zuckerberg invited all of Facebook’s users to ask him questions. It was an hour of Zuckerberg, unfiltered, and it yielded some interesting info. Here are the 10  fascinating details you don’t want to miss from today. You can also just watch the full event here.

AMA mark zuckerberg q and a at facebook

  • “Do you care that Facebook isn’t “cool” anymore?” Zuck responded that it’s never been about being cool. “I am not a cool person”. Zuckerberg doesn’t care if Facebook is cool. Zuckerberg sees Facebook as a utility like electricity and water, and as “the perfect personalized newspaper”. Zuckerberg feels that a product doesn’t have to be cool to see massive use.
  • Why He Just Gave $25 million to Ebola charities. Zuck feels that Ebola is an easily preventible possible mass tragedy, and he wants to stop it before it gets out of hand and becomes “the next HIV or Polio”. He also noted “What I would have given to go back to the ‘80s, to before I was born, and fight HIV before it exploded”.

  • “Why do you wear the same shirt every day? Is it the same shirt, or do you have multiple?”: Zuckerberg does it for the same reasons that Steve Jobs did it and Barack Obama does it. Psychological studies prove that decisions exhaust us. According to Zuckerberg, he doesn’t want to waste effort deciding on anything frivolous, because he wants to be well-prepared to decide how his product works for his billions of users. And yes, he has more than one shirt.
  • Watch Also: Zuckerberg Lectures to an empty room at Harvard
  • “What is the biggest misconception about startups?” Zuck says “The biggest misconception in the media is that one person builds these things… You don’t have to be super-human. You just have to find people who share your passion… I don’t have all the answers”.
  • “How accurate was “The Social Network” movie?” “I kinda blocked that one out. It was a very interesting experience that was supposedly about my life. The reality is that, writing a code and building a product is not that exciting,” he said. Zuckerberg also said the filmmakers went out of their way in the movie to get interesting details correct like the office space, but other items, not so much. “They just kind of made up a bunch of stuff that I found hurtful”
  • Why did Facebook force mobile users to download the messenger app? “The first thing I want to do is acknowledge that asking everyone in our community to install a new app is a big ask. We really believe that this is a better experience and the messaging is really important. Each app can do one thing well.”
  • In other news, Zuckerberg confirmed that Facebook is building solar-powered drones to provide internet access to people around the world (similar to Google’s project loon).
  • “Why isn’t the news feed chronological?” The average user looks at 100 posts per day on Facebook. The average user’s friends create around 1,500 posts daily. Without some filtering and algorithmic magic, things like births, marriages, and trips would be buried in a pile of fluff.
  • On that subject, new Newsfeed controls are on the way. Zuckerberg announced that Facebook is in the midst of building controls for you to fine-tune your newsfeed to your own tastes (i.e set it to show more photos, and less news stories).
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  • Facebook’s algorithms are also constantly adapting the newsfeed to your preferences, so by interacting with certain types of content (i.e photos) and ignoring others, you can get your news-feed to show what you’d like it to.

Note: I paraphrased a few questions and answers, and made edits for clarity. Thanks to The Next Web for helping me catch some of the exact quotes that I couldn’t write down fast enough.

Michael Sitver

Michael Sitver is a technology insider who has been blogging about technology since 2011. Along the way, he's interviewed founders of innovative startups, and executives from fortune 500 companies, and he's tried dozens or hundreds of gadgets. Michael has also contributed to works featured in Newsday, The San Francisco Chronicle, and the associated press. Michael also occasionally consults, and writes for Seeking Alpha and Yahoo News.

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