When it comes to 21st century online success stories, few compare to the incredible growth and worldwide change that Facebook has achieved. Founded in 2003 by an assortment of Harvard University students, the website has gone on to become one of the Internet’s top businesses, boasting over one billion members as of 2012.
Founded in a Harvard dorm room by Mark Zuckerberg, Eduardo Saverin, Chris Hughes, Dustin Moskovitz, and Andrew McCollum, the early Facebook is almost nothing like the social network’s current website. A new age ‘hot or not’ type of application for Harvard University, the original website was highly controversial.
The website initially attracted critical feedback from Harvard administrators due to Zuckerberg’s policy of stealing images from the school’s records. To quickly fill the website with users, Zuckerberg hacked into Harvard’s record server and took all of the year’s student photographs with him, adding them to the site’s ‘hot or not’ area.