'The Battle for Facebook': The Article That Anticipated 'The Social Network'


Before The Social Network and Ben Mezrich's Accidental Billionaires, the book that served as the basis for the movie, Rolling Stone published "The Battle for Facebook" in June of 2008. The piece recounts Mark Zuckerberg's unrelenting campaign to make Facebook "the new MTV" — and the way he cast aside now-well-known former collaborators like Divya Narendra, the Winkelvoss twins and Eduardo Saverin to do so. The article articulates the dilemma that has framed discussions about Zuckerberg ever since: As Hoffman writes, "the fact that many consider Zuckerberg a grade-A asshole doesn't mean he did anything illegal," and yet, as a Wall Street Journal columnist told her, "Even if he's not culpable, the number of people he's had problems with at a young age is remarkable — and not in a good way."

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