BuzzFeed has dug up a memo written a couple of years ago by Facebook vice president Andrew “Boz” Bosworth. He now says he never believed any of it and wrote it just to be provocative. Here’s an excerpt:
The ugly truth is that we believe in connecting people so deeply that anything that allows us to connect more people more often is *de facto* good. It is perhaps the only area where the metrics do tell the true story as far as we are concerned…. That’s why all the work we do in growth is justified. All the questionable contact importing practices. All the subtle language that helps people stay searchable by friends.
….I know a lot of people don’t want to hear this….We do have great products but we still wouldn’t be half our size without pushing the envelope on growth…. That’s our imperative. Because that’s what we do. We connect people.
You can decide for yourself if you buy the excuse that Bosworth was just trying to stimulate discussion. I don’t. This sounds to me precisely like the kinds of things Mark Zuckerberg used to say in public until he wised up. This is Zuckerberg’s vision, connecting everyone in the world whether they want to be connected or not. It also happens to be great for the bottom line, which means that at Facebook church and state are always on the same page. That’s a powerful combination for conquest, as the entire continent of South America can attest.