In 2010, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s story was the stuff of Hollywood movies. “The Social Network,” about the website and its founder’s meteoric rise, starred A-listers Jesse Eisenberg and Justin Timberlake, won an Oscar and made almost $250 million in the United States alone.
What a difference eight years makes.
Today, Zuckerberg is seen by many as a wincing megalomaniacal multibillionaire, and the personal data-mining company he created is viewed by some as an existential threat to democracy itself.
“It’s been a sudden thing. These people are not the darlings anymore and it’s been hard for them to adapt,” Lincoln Network President Aaron Ginn told Fox News. “So they’ve made a lot of unforced errors.”
Ginn, who co-founded the Lincoln Network five years ago to help technology and government work together to promote individual liberty and economic opportunity, added that “there are significant internal company responsibilities that, I think, [Facebook executives] have not lived up to.”
Indeed, in less than a decade, Zuckerberg has managed to enrage leaders on both sides of the aisle in the U.S., and around the world, as his social media network has emerged as a polarizing tool that can be politically weaponized amid concerns about algorithms issues, privacy, misinformation and bias.