How Mark Zuckerberg Began To Embrace The Idea Of Ads In Facebook’s News Feed

By David Cohen 

MarkZuckerbergTechCrunchDisrupt650“Wouldn’t it be fun to build a billion-dollar business in six months?” That question, posed by Facebook Co-Founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg to Director of Engineering Andrew Bosworth in May 2012, during a walk around the social network’s campus in Menlo Park, Calif., sparked the company’s overhaul of its advertising infrastructure, and it marked just one of the anecdotes included in a wide-ranging, detailed story for The Wall Street Journal by Evelyn M. Rusli.

The project was referred to internally as “Prioritization,” Rusli wrote, and it marked Zuckerberg’s shedding of his reluctance to include ads in Facebook’s News Feed.

Rusli shared several past quotes from Zuckerberg explaining his hesitancy to embrace News Feed ads, including:

Facebook was not originally created to be a company.

It drives me crazy when people write stuff and assert that we’re doing something because the goal is to make a lot of money.

And Rusli spoke with an unnamed former senior employee of the social network, who recalled “being chided” for mentioning potential revenue when discussing a new product idea, and added:

If you brought up revenue in an argument with Zuck, you would lose automatically.

For much more on how Zuckerberg embraced Facebook’s renewed focus on advertising, please see the WSJ post.

Readers: Have you adjusted to the appearance of ads in Facebook’s News Feed?

Image courtesy of Courtney Rundles.