Sorry, Zuck This Letter Sucks…

Nowadays, anybody can start up the year with an open letter. But that doesn’t mean they everybody should start the year with an open letter.

Let’s take Mark Zuckerberg. With all due respect to the person signing the letter. Let’s just focus on what he wrote and how it comes off emphasis is mine paragraph by paragraph:

“On our journey to connect the world, we often discuss products we’re building and updates on our business. Today I want to focus on the most important question of all: are we building the world we all want?

Great question Zuck, are we building the world we all want? Note though that the the two ‘we’ is almost certainly not the same group of people. My two cent is that the first ‘we’ is Zuck dreaming the future of ‘we’ as humanity. As a consequence ‘World’ naturally translates, not to the Blue Planet commonly referred to as Earth, but to ‘Facebook’.

“History is the story of how we’ve learned to come together in ever greater numbers — from tribes to cities to nations. At each step, we built social infrastructure like communities, media and governments to empower us to achieve things we couldn’t on our own.”
  • Note the important here is the ever greater number. See moonshot projects Facebook and Zuck steamed up in 2016.
  • Side note on achieving things we couldn’t on our own. One thing is certain Zuck couldn’t build Facebook alone, yet he managed nicely to snatch it away from his co-founders.
“Today we are close to taking our next step. Our greatest opportunities are now global — like spreading prosperity and freedom, promoting peace and understanding, lifting people out of poverty, and accelerating science. Our greatest challenges also need global responses — like ending terrorism, fighting climate change, and preventing pandemics. Progress now requires humanity coming together not just as cities or nations, but also as a global community.”

Do you feel that bad taste in your mouth too? Zuck, please note that science cannot be accelerated contrary to ‘scientific progress’ that we can accelerate. Also, coming together as a global community was on the flag of globalization as well, yet it did not bring humanity closer by an inch. Or at least it does not scale, save overheating our planet.

“This is especially important right now. Facebook stands for bringing us closer together and building a global community. When we began, this idea was not controversial. Every year, the world got more connected and this was seen as a positive trend. Yet now, across the world there are people left behind by globalization, and movements for withdrawing from global connection. There are questions about whether we can make a global community that works for everyone, and whether the path ahead is to connect more or reverse course.”

Helloa Zuck, the bigger part of the planet never enjoyed globalization, or even understands the concept truly, so we can safely stipulate they were already left behind. Plus removing your Facebook profile not necessarily means you ‘withdraw yourself from global connection’.

“This is a time when many of us around the world are reflecting on how we can have the most positive impact. I am reminded of my favorite saying about technology: “We always overestimate what we can do in two years, and we underestimate what we can do in ten years.” We may not have the power to create the world we want immediately, but we can all start working on the long term today. In times like these, the most important thing we at Facebook can do is develop the social infrastructure to give people the power to build a global community that works for all of us.”

To get to the real meaning of the emphasized part read ‘my dear shareholders’.

“For the past decade, Facebook has focused on connecting friends and families. With that foundation, our next focus will be developing the social infrastructure for community — for supporting us, for *keeping us safe, for informing us, for civic engagement, and for inclusion of all.”

You immigrant, democrats you’re next.

How do we help people build an informed community that exposes us to new ideas and builds common understanding in a world where every person has a voice?

For this I know the answer. Let’s just stop fake news Zuck. Oh, or are we talking about selling people’s life out to advertisers?

How do we help people build a civically-engaged community in a world where participation in voting sometimes includes less than half our population?

Well, again, Facebook has done it’s fair share of hyping fake news that didn’t really help. So, it’s understandable now he feels a bit of remorse.

That much for the forewords. Feel free to read the original.

Here’s what the PR experts are saying about it up until now, Zuck.

Courtesy of blablameter.com

No comment? Now let’s go for the rest — only taking the readings (thanks to blablameter.com) for the tool and the visual yumminess.

Supportive communities

Safe community

Informed community

Civically-engaged community

Inclusive community

Parting words

TL;DR

Mark Zuckerberg thought it’s time to write something big. So he wrote a big open letter.

Obviously there are multiple agendas, hidden between the lines. Else it would shine through with a clearer light.

Performance chart of the open letter — thanks to https://www.datawrapper.de for the visualization:

Any BI reading above 0.3 is FISHY.

Do you know of any recent open letter that would contain as much, or maybe more? Ping me I may be interested to cover it.


Interested in gibberish in the job advertisement of prominent tech players? Then read this piece.

Not sure if it’s safe to Recommend this piece, but if you liked it feel free.