Facebook is a social networking service and website launched in February 2004 by Mark Zuckerberg and his college roommates Eduardo Saverin, Dustin Moskovitz and Chris Hughes.
The story began from Zuckerberg’s dormitory room in Harvard University by hacking into the Harvard’s secure computer network and copied the student’s private dormitory ID images. He called the website Facemash which attracted 450 visitors and 22,000 photo-views in its first four hours online. Later on Zuckerberg confronted dismissal from University by the administration due to the breaking of security, violating copyrights, and violating individual privacy. Eventually, the charges were dropped and in the next semester, Zuckerberg started writing code for a new Web site called Thefacebook which inspired by Facemash (Wikipedia, n.d, PARA1-7).Immediately after Thefacebook(the primary name of Facebook) was launched in February 2004, Cameron Winklevoss, Tyler Winklevoss, and Divya Narendra, three Harvard seniors, blamed Zuckerberg for stealing their ideas and creating his own social website while he promised them to help building a social network called HarvardConnection.com. For this reason they later filed a lawsuit against Zuckerberg (Wikipedia, n.d, PARA 7).
At the beginning, only Harvard students were allowed to register in Facebook but after a while in March 2004, Facebook expanded to Stanford, Columbia, and Yale. Gradually it became open to all the universities in U.S. and Canada. Consequently Facebook reached 1 million active users In December 2004 and that was a huge success for the company (Wikipedia, n.d, PARA 8).
In mid-2004, Zuckerberg became the company's president and moved company base of operations to Palo Alto, California by the advice of his business partner Sean Parker. In August 2005 Facebook Received $200,000 from PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel as its first investment. The company officially changed its name from Thefacebook to Facebook (Wikipedia, n.d, PARA 9).
Only months later, in a logical step as zuckerberg said, Facebook expanded to high school networks and some famous company’s employees such as Apple Inc and Microsoft. Eventually the website opened to every one age 13 and older with a valid email address on September 26, 2006 (Wikipedia, n.d, PARA 10).
Although During 2006-2011 Facebook had a very rapid growth from 12 million to 750 million active users, Nevertheless, Facebook's market growth suddenly started to drop in some regions. For instance Facebook lost 7 million active users in the United States and Canada in May 2011. Based on ConsumersReports.org in May 2011, there were 7.5 million children under age 13 which caused Facebook facing violation of site’s terms of service because of the underage users. Hopefully soon enough DoubleClick reported Facebook as the most visited web site in the world by reaching one trillion pageview in a month In June 2011. It also became the second most accessed website in the U.S. without considering Google as in the DoubleClick rankings. Based on recent reports on February 2012, Facebook is available in 70 different languages and has more than 845 million active users (Wikipedia, n.d, PARA 2-3).
Registration for the website is free and users can create profiles with photos, lists of personal interests, contact information, and other personal information. Users can communicate with their friends and other users in both private and public messages. A chat feature also is available. They can create and join their favorite groups just by clicking on the Like bottom (called "fan pages" until April 19, 2010). Some of these groups created by organizations with the purpose of advertising. Users have control over their information they have shared, as well as who can find them in searches, through their privacy settings. (Wikipedia, n.d, PARA 21-22).In addition I can point out to some other services such as: Games and Applications and Gifts which