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The Facebook Effect: The Inside Story of the Company That is Connecting the World

3.83  ·  Rating Details  ·  6,299 Ratings  ·  495 Reviews
The inside story of Facebook, told with the full, exclusive cooperation of founder Mark Zuckerberg and the company's other leaders.

In little more than half a decade, Facebook has gone from a dorm-room novelty to a company with 500 million users. It is one of the fastest growing companies in history, an essential part of the social life not only of teenagers but hundreds of
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Hardcover, 384 pages
Published June 8th 2010 by Simon & Schuster (first published 2010)
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Otis Chandler
This is a book that every entrepreneur definitely needs to read, and everyone who works even remotely with Facebook needs to read. It does a simply amazing job going behind the scenes of Facebook and describing where the site came from, how it got to where it is, and where it's going.

The author had amazing inside access to Mark Zuckerberg and other key Facebook employees and investors. Very smart of Facebook to include David so often - it makes their story fully open, which is consistent with th
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Cynthia
Nov 20, 2010 Cynthia rated it liked it
An interesting read, though it was about twice as long as it needed to be. It is unbelievable the number of companies begging to put money by the millions into FB, and also amazing that the CEO Mark Zuckerberg has resisted so many opportunities to sell and become very wealthy - or to even go public with an IPO. Having been in the world of IT for so many years, I was blown away by the numbers of users being added every day - at one point a million. Yes, a million. It sounds like they only had a c ...more
Michael
Dec 31, 2010 Michael rated it really liked it
Kirkpatrick's The Facebook Effect is a journalistic approach to the development and changes in Facebook as a platform and company since its inception. The book is easy and fairly quick to read, and chock full of details. At times, I think it was a bit too heavy on advertising approaches and financial issues, but overall, it was enjoyable. The book also serves as a nice counterpart to the dramatized The Social Network, and provides some factual accounts that the movie glosses over, dramatizes, or ...more
Stephanie Sun
This book is already slightly out of date, but it is a well-reported and engaging summary of Facebook's history and impact through 2010. When Kirkpatrick waxes about big picture issues, he is smart, strikes the exact right tone, and doesn't belabor his own points.

Not a Facebook user until 2009, in reading this book I was most struck with how important Zuck's commitment to minimalism was to the company's early success. As its most successful competitors, Twitter and Tumblr, have a similar commitm
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Kathy Scantle
Dec 17, 2010 Kathy Scantle rated it really liked it
I read the Accidental Billionaire a few months ago and even though I thought it was almost a tabloid sort of book about the founding of Facebook, I was still completely captivated to learn how Facebook was started. I was so intriqued by the founding of Facebook that I wanted to learn more. Did Zuckerberg steal the Facebook idea from the Winklevoss twins? Did he swindle his friend Eduardo out of the company? How much is Facebook worth in real dollars? The Facebook Effect, written by a technology ...more
Amy L. Campbell
Aug 24, 2010 Amy L. Campbell rated it it was ok
With a title like "Facebook Effect" I was hoping for more on how Facebook is currently being used and perhaps case studies of how it has positively and negatively affected the lives of its users. Instead what I got was a sycophantic overview of the company history and development of Facebook. This would have been acceptable, but Kirkpatrick's narrative reads like a cross between a love letter and an article in People Magazine, complete with descriptions of what Zuckerberg wears. Constantly. I am ...more
Thomas Edmund
Oct 10, 2010 Thomas Edmund rated it it was amazing
It's hard to comprehend an internet user who hasn't heard of Facebook, sure there are many out there who don't feel the need to use the application, and some who stubbornly resist signing up for various reasons (usually privacy fears or strange phobias of their friendships being somehow changed irreparably by the experience) but the chances are that if you've logged onto the World Wide Web you're familiar with the phenomenon known as Facebook.

In this work, Kirkpatrick takes us through a candid
...more
Kshitij
Aug 19, 2012 Kshitij rated it really liked it
This book was exceptional. Telling us about how Facebook was formed in every detail. I mean look at it, i am logging on to goodreads from my facebook account.
David's style of writing is amazing. They way he has conveyed everything has been pleasing. This book has been quiet inspirational. Mark Zuckerberg is surely a true genius. This book is one of those books one should not miss to read. I mean who today is NOT on facebook. One can understand the story behind every small thing on facebook from
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Lijo
Jul 23, 2011 Lijo rated it liked it
I love reading books about internet companies. Books like Boo-Hoo about the erstwhile boo.com and The Google Story about Google and was looking forward to this book aout Faceook when I read about this for the first time in TechCrunch. The writer seems to glorify Mark Zuckerberg and seems be a huge facebook fan and so many things in this book are biased towards facebook and may not be the true story. However this book is a fascinating account about the growth of facebook from the dorms of Harvard ...more
Tim
Jul 07, 2010 Tim rated it it was amazing
Somehow now seems like the perfect time for an all encompassing report on both the history and state of social networking behemoth Facebook. Having experienced what can only be described as torrid growth – closing in on a half-billion users – while still taking in private money prior to a much anticipated eventual IPO (2011?), Facebook is unquestionably the most important social utility to ever hit the web.

In the newly released, ‘The Facebook Effect,’ former Fortune magazine technology editor, D
...more
David
Sep 12, 2010 David rated it really liked it
A lot of things about facebook are a mystery to me.

Not how to use the service or why it is so popular, but why the pages have so few ads on them; how were they able to scale so smoothly; why have they never listed publicly ?; how do they make money ?; why were they so ignorant of the privacy implications of what they did ?

Well this book went a long way to answering these questions.

The answer to these questions is Mark Zuckerberg.

Zuckerberg's driving force with facebook was to `grow the site'. H
...more
Carrie
Mar 20, 2011 Carrie rated it really liked it
Fascinating, and I enjoyed this book much more than The Social Network movie. I'd highly recommend it to anybody interested in new media. I've heard some criticize this book as being far too glowing, and I guess maybe Kirkpatrick did "go native" in a sense given the access he had - it is clear how much he admires Zuckerberg and Facebook. However, Kirkpatrick is a journalist and this book is very well-reported and offers a level of detail and insight into the founding of the company and its inner ...more
Amar Pai
Nov 22, 2010 Amar Pai rated it it was ok
Not the book "Social Network" was based on; that one (Accidental Billionaires) was written by the same guy who wrote "Bringing Down The House," the story of MIT students who beat Vegas at blackjack. Both of his books are dodgy affairs; he plays loose with facts and adds countless embellishments/fabrications for the sake of the story. The result is a hybrid of fiction and non-fiction.

"Facebook Effect" is a more traditional reportage-type book. It's way too "pro-Zuckerburg" to be considered objec
...more
Socialbookshelves.com
Jan 05, 2016 Socialbookshelves.com rated it really liked it
The Facebook Effect claims to be “The Real Story Behind THE SOCIAL NETWORK”, and I believe it was even used as source material for the movie of the same name. It certainly does offer a great glimpse into Facebook’s early days, although things have moved along even further since the book’s publication and Facebook has morphed into a huge behemoth that the author could never have predicted.

That said, if you’re looking for the early years, the story of how Mark Zuckerberg created TheFacebook.com fr
...more
Simon Taylor
Feb 14, 2014 Simon Taylor rated it liked it
Make no mistake. If you want a definitive history of Facebook, this is it. Kirkpatrick really does have unprecedented access to the business, to Zuckerberg and to the major players of the day, Sean Parker and all. And there is no better time to read it than Facebook’s tenth anniversary.

The Facebook effect chronicles the first six or so years of the eponymous social network’s life, from Harvard dormitory to global success. The impressive detail chronicles Thefacebook’s transition from campus craz
...more
Troy Blackford
Jan 31, 2014 Troy Blackford rated it it was amazing
This was an in-depth and fascinating account of Facebook from creation up through to 2010. The author spent a huge amount of time actually hanging out at the company and interviewing dozens of people to piece together the well-written account that you get here. While the author isn't afraid to criticize Facebook, this is an authorized book (though the author stresses in an interview that its content wasn't approved by the company) and one gets the sense that he was so awed by the company and the ...more
Mike Rochac
Nov 04, 2010 Mike Rochac rated it liked it
El libro es entretenido y muy informativo sobre un fenomeno con el cual casi todos tenemos que ver: Facebook. Como la mayoria de los libros que he leido sobre la formacion, estado actual y futuro de mis empresas favoritas (y FCBK lo es) la mejor parte en lo personal es el inicio, ese momento del "EUREKA" que algunas personas tienen en su vida, y este es un eureka de 15000 millones de dolares!

Se ve que el escritor es de confianza de Zuckerberg lo cual es bueno porque nos da muchos detalles intimo
...more
Ethan Gilsdorf
Facebook world

Tracing the birth and mushrooming growth of the site and how it’s reshaping relationships and society

By Ethan Gilsdorf, Boston Globe Correspondent | July 11, 2010

Facebook has become, for many, home sweet home on the Web. It has nearly blasted MySpace and other social networking sites into obsolescence. When last checked, Facebook was, after Google, the world’s second most visited website.

But more than just market share, Facebook has captured mind share. It’s astounding how, in the
...more
Daniel Taylor
Jul 12, 2011 Daniel Taylor rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone on Facebook
As I reread the book in this new movie tie-in edition, I thought I'd share my insights on this fresh read without looking at my earlier review.

David Kirkpatrick writes with insight into not only what happened in Facebook's history but in how it's grown to just shy of a billion users worldwide. First: it's less a company and more a country. You don't hide behind cutesy usernames, you use your real identity. As such, Facebook is made up of real people and the problems they bring, thus needing the
...more
Teri Kelly
Aug 22, 2011 Teri Kelly rated it it was ok
Welcome to Zuckerberg – Pop: 350 Million.
Everyone who’s anyone these days is on Facebook. From President Obama (the social networking utility was credited with his election success) all the way on down the line. Mainly of course, Facebook is used by millions of nobodies desperately wanting to be somebodies – therein lies its global success. Its popularity, even its publicity – given its all too regular name-checking in everything from court cases to worldwide turns of events, is a virtual virus
...more
Jack
Jun 03, 2013 Jack rated it really liked it
I came around to this book after reading "The Accidental Billionaires", which many people are familiar with from the movie "The Social Network". You'll find a lot of comparison and contrast with the two, and you may wonder, "which one should I read?" I'd be inclined to say both, but read on.

The two books cover the same material, but from a different perspective. The Accidental Billionaires is an entertaining read, but when real life interferes with the story, Ben Mezrich bends the truth a littl
...more
Chris
This book is for anyone who is interested in learning, first hand, what it took to get the company where it is today. As with most books on tech companies, by the time it gets to print, it is already out-dated, but for the most part, there is very useful information on all the steps it took to get where it is today.

The great thing about reading this book was that Mark Zuckerberg encouraged all the interviews in this book and was very open, when Sandberg wasn't around, on his thoughts and feeling
...more
JD Lasica
Sep 13, 2010 JD Lasica rated it really liked it
Shelves: recommended
David Kirkpatrick’s The Facebook Effect is two books in one: a surprisingly riveting narrative tale of the early days of “the facebook” from its launch at Harvard, viral growth at campuses across the nation and move to Silicon Valley (coming to a movie screen to you on Oct. 1: The Social Network); and a sobering assessment of how Facebook is changing our culture, from attitudes about privacy to the long-term effects of transparency and over-sharing. The book was my favorite summer read and dese ...more
Richard MacManus
Dec 30, 2010 Richard MacManus rated it really liked it
I came away from this book more informed about Facebook and more impressed with its CEO Mark Zuckerberg. Although in many ways it's like a hagiography of Zuckerberg. I'd bought the book earlier in the year, but only got around to reading it over Xmas. It's basically an official biography, written in co-operation with Facebook and Zuckerberg. As a result it offers few critiques of the company or its founder; and doesn't dive into touchy subjects like privacy at great depth. For example with priva ...more
Blog on Books
Jul 26, 2010 Blog on Books rated it it was amazing
Somehow now seems like the perfect time for an all encompassing report on both the history and state of social networking behemoth Facebook. Having experienced what can only be described as torrid growth – closing in on a half-billion users – while still taking in private money prior to a much anticipated eventual IPO (2011?), Facebook is unquestionably the most important social utility to ever hit the web.

In the newly released, ‘The Facebook Effect,’ former Fortune magazine technology editor, D
...more
Ted Trembinski
Aug 03, 2010 Ted Trembinski rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
Just finished this in-depth look into the history of the Social Empire aka Facebook.

First impressions: Wow, would I have loved to work at Facebook in it’s early years. Kirkpatrick frames the company as a forward-thinking-let’s-change-the-world-we-can-do-it-but-we-still-love-partying-because-we’re-all-21 kind of place. The bit about Mark Zuckerberg not looking up from his computer while working, only responding in IMs made me think back to a time when my friends and I would LAN together, and I ha
...more
Gabriela
Jul 27, 2012 Gabriela rated it it was amazing
The book is an illustration of the success of Facebook and the insider intrigues that faced the founder

In 'Facebook Effect', David Kirkpatrick uses an engaging narrative to tell the story of the most influential social network, Facebook. The book is an illustration of the success of Facebook and the insider intrigues that faced the founder, Mark Zuckerberg and his small clique of executives. While it is not an actual biography, the book reads like a story about the challenges and triumphs that t
...more
Ana Rusness-petersen
This is an amazing book in all ways! I can't praise it enough! It is a must read for all, including a history of Facebook as a concept and a company, an in-depth look at the technology industry including venture capitalists, and a detailed exploration about the developing role and potential power of social media and where it may lead us, as a globalized community, in the near future.



This book is well written by an insightful author who knows the technology industry and has a wise perspective thr
...more
Gil Bradshaw
Jul 12, 2010 Gil Bradshaw rated it it was amazing
So far this book is fantastic. The book starts with a story of a few Colombians who became outspoken critics of the FARC on facebook and eventually orchestrate an entire demonstration with millions of protestors. This book is shaping up to be fantastic.

Update:

Let's be clear, this is a business book. This isn't an instructional book about how to use facebook, nor is it a technical jargon-laden book for programmers and aspiring developers.

If you are still interested in a business book about Face
...more
Heidi
Dec 26, 2011 Heidi rated it really liked it
Wanna know what makes my heart race when I’m on Amazon? The name of a respected author next to a picture of a nerd turned entrepreneur with “inside story” in the tagline. I needed to breathe into a paper bag before this book was in my cart.

And this time love at first sight was right. The only reason why I’m stopping at 4 stars is because it didn’t change me, my life or do anything else profound. Though I did tweak my FB privacy settings afterwards.

If you want to know how Mark Zuckerberg went fr
...more
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“Facebook also has a fundamental characteristic that has proven key to its appeal in country after country—you only see friends there.” 14 likes
“Mark has the most long-term perspective I’ve ever seen. This guy is uber uber uber on the long-term view.” 4 likes
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