Zuckerberg’s Dorm Room Success: From Facemash to Facebook

What made Zuckerberg's story so special is the story in between how he went from Facemash to creating the social media empire known as Facebook.

Zuckerberg’s story is really inspiring. At an early age, he already picked up programming and loved it. His love for the code even urged him to get a graduate course related to programming when he was still in high school. But what made his story so special is the story in between how he went from Facemash to creating the social media empire known as Facebook.

Source: FB Newsroom

It all started at Harvard, where Zuckerberg released this “hot or not” website that pits two students together and you’d have to pick which one is better. Facemash was launched October 2002 and tapped into the images of each Harvard dorm house’s “facebook”—Harvard’s dormroom directory—which Zuckerberg admittedly hacked. It garnered a lot of attention until it was forced to shut down due to some serious privacy complaints to the school board. This almost got Zuckerberg expelled but the charges were ultimately dropped.

Zuckerberg in 2004. Source: Imgur

At 2004, Mark thought about the Facemash incident as a guiding light to create a universal facebook in which all Harvard students can access. He pushed on with this idea and later on created the first website at “theFacebook.com” Dustin Moskovitz, who was Zuckerberg’s roommate at the time, said that after the site was built, one of Mark’s friends urged him to put it on his dorm house (Kirkland) mailing list. While the list only contained around 300 names, registration on the site boomed to around 1200 – 1500 applicants in 24 hours.

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Source: The Crimson

Following the immediate in-house success was an immediate complaint against Zuckerberg’s work. Three of his seniors upped and complained to their school paper about Zuckerberg ripping of an idea to create a social media site specifically for Harvard, HarvardConnect.com. This led to a lawsuit which was settled by Facebook off-court. Aside from this, the growth of theFacebook.com was steady. It spread out to different Ivy League and Boston-area schools. In June 2004, they officially dropped ‘the’ from the name and thus Facebook.com was born, with a little $200,000 price tag on the domain, of course.

Source: Imgur

A series of events happened afterwards, numerous acquisitions like WhatsApp, Instagram, and Oculus Rift became building blocks that brought Facebook’s name even higher. The only question left today is: “how high can it still go?” The point that everyone with internet access knows what the blue “f” stands for and the fact that this was all conceived in a dorm room of some guy who dropped out of Harvard makes it a story worth listening to. Facebook’s rise to success all started with a joke to see who’s hot and who’s not and what it became after that is no laughing matter. It grew ever steadily, expanding to numerous locations and opening offices worldwide. Facebook started acquiring companies for their tech and their people, well mostly their people, for the purpose of steady expansion that helps increase the armada of the growing online empire.


Tomorrow, people might forget about Facemash and the entire story behind it. But during this modern age of information, people will never forget how Facebook revolutionized the world of social media and the name Mark Zuckerberg which started it all.

Cielo Santos

Engineer. Writer. Artist. Gamer. Musician. She dreams of building a time machine and help kittens take over the world. Is secretly the pink power ranger in real life.

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Zuckerberg’s Dorm Room Success: From Facemash to Facebook

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