So the other day my boss challenges me to invent a social network. Something I’ve never given much thought to but fair enough I thought at the time. So I started by working out where social media is heading, which went well, where a gap might be and then that big moment where I found the idea to fill that gap…And then Facebook launched Paper, which pretty much cut that “idea” into little pieces. The only thing that remains being the status update my boss posted from my profile when I left myself logged in for a minute when I wasn’t around my laptop.
All this being about as close as I’ll ever come to inventing a social network: one status update taking the p***. Which only increases my respect for those of us who really do think differently and go make it, much like WhatsApp inventor Jann Koum, who returned to the same welfare office he used to visit for food stamps to sign his US$19 billion (cash and shares) deal with Facebook, surely the most brilliantly modest way anyone’s ever become a billionaire.
With the deal done, a colleague in his twenties told me that it was a waste of money, although at that age he should probably be inventing a social network – Koum in his late thirties is quite ancient. This was something I too was presumptuous enough to think about Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s IPO two years ago; so speaking with the benefit of humble pie I reckon we should give Koum and Zuckerberg another two years to show us what a monster Facebook-WhatsApp might become.
Zuckerberg must have a vision of where he’s going with this, and he’s done pretty well up to know, and Koum, whose different vision up to now has included privacy and no ads, must share likely it…that and he gets to become a fellow social media billionaire. So there it is. All respect due to those a lot smarter than us, inventing the social networks we nearly invented, but didn’t, and adding a lot more value to the world than any self-proclaimed “guru”, like this guy.
My good friend Jamaica Mocha knows good Jamaican coffee. Check him out, order online at jamaicamocha.com.
Fourteen Caribbean states are demanding £billions, represented by the same law firm that last year won £20 million for Kenyans tortured during the Mau Mau rebellion. Read about it here