Facebook: Infringement Free?
It was nice of Jesse Eisenberg to portray the life of Mark
Zuckerberg. Many critics claim that he did a good job acting
as the founder of Facebook. The movie, “The Social
Network,” presented how the genius made Facebook a
household name in the 21st century. The movie chronicles
how Zuckerberg started in Facesmash after he was broken
hearted (like when you were selling your phone). It later
entangles a patent lawsuit because Zuckerberg stole
Facebook’s concept from the twin brothers’ ideas, the
Winklevosses. Who wouldn’t? With Facebook as one of the most profitable social networking
sites in the world, having Facebook shares is harvesting money. Millions have Facebook
accounts and Mark Zuckerberg certainly has many friends. But, it’s inevitable to get some
enemies along the way.
It was back when Mark Zuckerberg was in college in Harvard. After he was heartbroken, he
created Facesmash to air out his emotions. He hacked Harvard’s cyber security to get faces of
women and “smash” them by comparing who between the two was more beautiful. Zuckerberg
was reprimanded by Harvard immediately. Facesmash became a hit. It created heavy traffic in
just a short span of time. This made the twin brothers, the Winklevosses, decide to collaborate
with Zuckerberg. Being rich people, they want him to make a social networking site for
Harvard’s elite. They paid him in exchange for his services. However, as things went on, it was
apparent that Zuckerberg did not honor the agreement. He created a social networking site
similar to the twin brothers’ concept.
So, as the Facebook started to grow its social network, the Winklevosses sued Zuckerberg for
patent infringement. Zuckerberg claimed innocence, as expected. He defended that the
concept came to him first with the help of his co-founder, Eduardo Saverin. They were inspired
by Bill Gates to promote and expand Facesmash with only around $1000 to start up the site.
The lawsuit continued. Eventually, both parties agreed to settle the lawsuit with the twin
brothers bringing home $65 million dollars. That might be a small sum, like someone who sold
cell phones for money, considering that Facebook is one of the richest companies in the world.
Were the Winklevosses deterred from fulfilling their dream of creating a social networking site?
With their athletic spirit, they said never. They invested some of their lawsuit winnings in their
own networking site, SumZero. The networking site was like what they envisioned it to be.
SumZero was somehow similar to Facebook but it was far from what Zuckerberg built. SumZero
was an exclusive social networking site. It didn’t immediately allow “outside” people to join the
club. The twin brothers made sure the site was a place where high-quality ideas were posted.
With it as a reflection of their owners, SumZero would not be a household name like Facebook
but it would certainly keep the elite intact.
How about Facebook? It is dealing with privacy issues because it has been altering privacy
controls to catch up with what people need. Trying to improve the system all over again, they
have also changed all profiles into Timeline. That way, users can have cover photos to brag
about. Avid Facebook users have even sold their smart phones just to catch up with the trend.