Hockey Stick Growth Charts

Facebook: Stage-By-Stage: How They Did It

Tinkering/Pre-Start (Pre-2004)

  • Mark Zuckerberg creates “Facemash,” a site asking the user to choose which face is more attractive between two options; Zuckerberg gains Harvard notoriety
  • Zuckerberg works on a project for Harvard students and alumni to connect, HarvardConnection, that later becomes ConnectU
  • Mark Zuckerberg, Eduardo Saverin, Chris Hughes, and Dustin Moskovitz launch their dorm room project on February 4, 2004 (Zuckerberg is a 19-year-old Harvard sophomore)
  • Site launches as “”

The Blade Years (2004-2006)

  • February 2004: Harvard seniors accuse Zuckerberg of stealing their idea to create HarvardConnection; turns into a lawsuit
  • September 2004: PayPal CEO, Peter Thiel, invests $500,000 at a $5 million valuation
  • December 2004: Over 1 million people are registered for Facebook
  • August 2005: Site officially becomes; purchases address for $200,000
  • September 2006: Anyone with an email address can register for Facebook

The Growth Inflection Point (2006)

  • Year 3 growth inflection point: $46,568,879 revenue (grew 417 percent from 2005)
  • Seven million users between high schools and universities (80 percent of the student social networking market)
  • Turns down $1 billion acquisition offer from Yahoo

Surging Growth (2007-2010)

  • 2007: Judge rules that Zuckerberg is not guilty of stealing the HarvardConnection idea
  • August 2009: Facebook acquires FriendFeed, a real-time news aggregator
  • 2010: Changes privacy settings; survives the threats of people quitting Facebook
  • 2010: Introduces “Like” button
  • 2010: Movie The Social Network debuts
  • 2010: Grows to 400 million users visiting the site per month