Facebook is a social media and social networking company based in Menlo Park, California. It launched on February 4, 2004 with founders Mark Zuckerberg, Eduardo Saverin, Andrew McCollum, Dustin Moskovitz, and Chris Hughes.
Initially limited to Harvard students, Facebook expanded it to higher education institutions in the Boston area, the Ivy League schools, and Stanford University. The name comes from the face book directories often given to American university students. Since 2006, teens and adults have been allowed to become a register on Facebook. Facebook offered its initial public offering (IPO) in February 2012, and began selling stock to the public three months later. The business earns the majority of its revenue from advertisements that appear onscreen.
After registering, users can create a customized profile indicating their name, occupation, schools attended, and other personal information willing shared. Users can add other users as “friends”, post status updates, message other users, add photos and videos, use connected web services (“apps”), and receive alerts from other users and groups. Users may join user groups organized by workplace, school, hobbies or other topics.
As of January 2018, Facebook has more than 2.2 billion monthly active users. In recent years, the company has faced scrutiny regarding fake news, user privacy, and hate speech.
On May 1, 2018, Facebook announced its plans to launch a new dating service. According to Mark Zuckerberg: “There are 200 million people on Facebook that list themselves as single, so clearly there’s something to do here”.