If you listen closely, you might just hear the wind slowly dissipating from the sails of Facebook Co-Founder and CEO, Mark Zuckerberg. In less than two weeks, the hoodied messiah of social networking 101 has gone from cultural icon, to another schmuck that could've handled his business better.
When it came known that Facebook was headed toward an IPO, excitement boomed and skeptics began to shift their spectacles, tap their pens and write up theories about how possible it could be for Facebook to flop upon the open market.
Many out there, including I, believed that these people were simply taking the other side. You have to have evil to go with the good and you have to have some dark to make you appreciate the light, right?
Well, what began as a bunch of wolves simply predicting and estimating (and perhaps even hoping) that Facebook would get a little bit humbled has turned into 1,000+ "I told you this would happens..."
Although Facebook shares hit high notes initially, each and every day since, shares have continued to get lower than their original market value, or manage to hold at a lower level and carefully walk the line between staying afloat or crumbling into the nether regions.
Since he's the boss, of course, Zuckerberg is being raked over the coals. Now, that once endearing hoodie and visual youthfulness he had are being viewed as signs of his lack of business savvy and immaturity. And, his inability to give shareholders - either current or potential ones - reasons to help get the stock values back in the gaining category, is being viewed as the remnants of a man's shortsighted plan to go public maybe a tad too soon.
It doesn't help that he and some of the banks that signed on to help Facebook go public allegedly only provided weakened growth forecasts to certain investors and held such information away from the eyes of others, on the eve of the IPO. The lawsuits are in place as a result, so we shall see if this tomfoolery actually did occur. Either way, the fact that this issue is even out there does not bode well for Facebook's investor relations.
So here we are, our little Zuckerberg has become the big-bad Yuckerberg.
But really, if you believe even half of the storyline presented in The Social Network, wouldn't you think that Karma could be coming back at Yuckerberg? An Oscar-winning screenplay, books and multiple litigation cases and settlements prove that he did thoroughly stomp upon the backs of others to get Facebook to where it is today.
This is not to say that Yuckerberg is the only successful businessman to crush some souls and hurt some feelings on his way to the top. However, he has made the mistake of doing that, then attempting to eff some other guys over when trying to take his company to a more public place.
Sure, up until now it didn't really matter what bad Yuckerberg did, because as a privately owned company, there were way fewer people that had to be answered to if an idea went south, or a business failure took place. But now, while he and Facebook have been in the public eye for some time now, they are both now literally at the mercy of the public.
If Yuckerberg doesn't soon right his ship, offer more transparency and devise a serious plan to help make his cut throat college project a real-deal business that the public wants to financially participate in, he may one day emerge from his hoodie to find that he's been un-friended by the business sector.
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