aron Sorkin was going for a "great yarn" when he wrote the screenplay for his hit movie, The Social Network, says L. Gordon Crovitz in The Wall Street Journal. By examining the short history of Facebook "through the lens of lawsuits brought by others seeking a piece of the company," Sorkin focuses on how much credit Mark Zuckerberg, 26, deserves for "creating and building Facebook." But the "true and exciting" story behind Facebook is how Zuckerberg took an idea that was no secret — online social networks, such as Friendster, were already popular — and transformed it into a company valued at $33 billion and 500 million users, in just six years. Here, an excerpt:
There's evidence that Mr. Zuckerberg had a contract to write software for Harvard Connection, a concept of classmates Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss, and Divya Narendra. But a contract dispute is very different from the movie's portrayal of the issue being Mr. Zuckerberg stealing rights — as if someone could have a patent to the idea of a social network...
[If that were possible], innovation would be frozen. Instead, our system promotes innovation, leaving the next college coders free to improve on what came before, just as Mr. Zuckerberg did.
Read the full article at The Wall Street Journal. (subscription required)
- The Black Death is back
- How to make people like you: 6 science-based conversation hacks
- Diagnosing the Home Alone burglars' injuries: A professional weighs in
- Cul-de-sacs are killing America
- 10 things you need to know today: December 12, 2013
- Watch The Daily Show try to cheer the end of congressional gridlock
- Which professions have the most psychopaths?
- The 10 worst-reviewed movies of 2013
- How does chocolate milk stack up as a sports drink?
- Did Paul Ryan just throw in the towel on 2016?
Subscribe to the Week