“When I was in college, our country had just gone to war in Iraq. The mood on campus was disbelief. It felt like we were acting without hearing a lot of important perspectives. The toll on soldiers, families and our national psyche was severe, and most of us felt powerless to stop it. I remember feeling that if more people had a voice to share their experiences, maybe things would have gone differently. Those early years shaped my belief that giving everyone a voice empowers the powerless and pushes society to be better over time. Back then, I was building an early version of Facebook for my community, and I got to see my beliefs play out at smaller scale.”
— Mark Zuckerberg, in a recent speech at Georgetown University, sharing a new version of the true origin of Facebook’s founding
It certainly came as a surprise to me that he hoped to create a space where people could share their ideas and connect about opposition to the Iraq War! I am glad he told us. As he testifies today on the Hill, I have taken the liberty of revising some key moments of “The Social Network” to reflect this truth.
INT. RESTAURANT — EVENING
MARK sits with his soon-to-be ex-girlfriend, ERICA.
ERICA: Mark, you think girls don’t like you because you’re a nerd. But actually, it’s because of your principled opposition to the Iraq War.
MARK: The mood on campus is one of disbelief.
INT. MARK’S DORM ROOM — NIGHT
MARK sits in his dorm room, in a mood of disbelief. Then he starts writing. It’s not code. It’s a manifesto — against the Bush administration’s actions in Iraq. He scribbles it onto his dorm window.
MARK: If only there were a way to create a space to share this idea.
INT. MARK’S DORM ROOM — LATER
Mark types rapidly at his computer. His roommates stare over his shoulder.
ROOMMATE: What is it?
MARK: It’s called FaceMash. You use it to look at photos of two of your female classmates and vote hot or not based on how principled you think her opposition would be to the U.S. military presence in Iraq.
ROOMMATE: (pointing) The one on the right.
MARK: If enough of us vote, maybe we can — I don’t know, things might just be different.
EXT. CAMBRIDGE — NIGHT
MARK stands forlornly outside a final club, from which the sound of loud partying can be heard. His best friend, EDUARDO SAVERIN, looks at him with concern.
EDUARDO: You okay?
MARK: Yeah, I’m just thinking about the toll of the Iraq War on soldiers, families and our national psyche.
EXT. HARVARD YARD — DAY
The enormous twins TYLER and CAMERON WINKLEVOSS loom over MARK in their rowing gear.
TYLER: I am Tyler Winklevoss!
CAMERON: I am Tyler Winklevoss’s twin brother!
TYLER: We are upset for two reasons: that President George W. Bush is acting without hearing a lot of different perspectives, and because—
CAMERON: YOU STOLE OUR IDEA! HarvardConnectionToOpposeTheIraqWar.com!
INT. CLUB — NIGHT
MARK and SEAN PARKER, the founder of Napster, sit at an exclusive table.
SEAN PARKER: Yeah, I founded Napster. I founded it so people could download audio recordings of principled statements of opposition to Operation Enduring Freedom.
SEAN PARKER: A million dollars isn’t cool. You know what’s cool? A billion voices raised in opposition to the Iraq War.
MARK: (Shouting over the music.) YES!
SEAN PARKER: (Also shouting.) NOW IS OUR TIME! OUR TIME TO PULL OUT OF A WAR WE SHOULD NEVER HAVE STARTED IN THE FIRST PLACE!
INT. DEPOSITION ROOM — DAY
MARK, in his trademark Adidas flip flops and hoodie, sits listening to lawyers argue around him.
LAWYER: Mr. Zuckerberg, do I have your attention?
MARK: Yes, you have my attention. You have the minimum amount. The rest of my attention is thinking of the price this country paid for not listening to important perspectives before we went into Iraq. My mood is one of disbelief. Does that answer your condescending question?
INT. MARK’S ROOM — NIGHT
Mark stares at his computer, where his request for Erica to join the group We Oppose The Iraq War is unread. He reloads the page. Once again, he reloads the page.
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