Facebook Founder Mark Zuckerberg Named Time’s Person of the Year

Zuck takes it for 2010.

Mark Zuckerberg


Breaking: Mark Zuckerberg has just been named Time Magazine‘s person of the year. Guess all that worrying about what “The Social Network” might do to his reputation wasn’t justified!

For the record, we beat Time to the punch when it comes to making Zuckerberg a cover boy. He graced not one, but two, of our covers–in 2007, and in 2010.

Why has he earned the distinction this year? Says Time:

The way we connect with one another and with the institutions in our lives is evolving. There is an erosion of trust in authority, a decentralizing of power and at the same time, perhaps, a greater faith in one another. Our sense of identity is more variable, while our sense of privacy is expanding. What was once considered intimate is now shared among millions with a keystroke.

More than anyone else on the world stage, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg is at the center of these changes. Born in 1984, the same year the Macintosh computer was launched, he is both a product of his generation and an architect of it. The social-networking platform he invented is closing in on 600 million users. In a single day, about a billion new pieces of content are posted on Facebook. It is the connective tissue for nearly a tenth of the planet. Facebook is now the third largest country on earth and surely has more information about its citizens than any government does. Zuckerberg, a Harvard dropout, is its T-shirt-wearing head of state.

When you name someone person of the year, you also get to put that guy in the hot seat. Here’s a video of Time‘s chat with Zuck.

Mark Zuckerberg just posted: “Being named as TIME Person of the Year is a real honor and recognition of how our little team is building something that hundreds of millions of people want to use to make the world more open and connected. I’m happy to be a part of that.”


About the author

David Zax is a contributing writer for Fast Company. His writing has appeared in many publications, including Smithsonian, Slate, Wired, and The Wall Street Journal.