Sunday, January 04, 2015

Zuckerberg (Facebook) Declares A Year of Books

Celebrities have always influenced what people read, listened to and watched and we have many book examples such as Oprah in the US and to a lesser extent Richard and Judy in the UK. Now Facebook founder and CEO, Mark Zuckerberg has stated his intent to not only read a book every two weeks, but to invite everyone to share the experience with him on Facebook. He has already launched a dedicated Facebook page called ‘A year of books’ and within the first 24 hours it has been liked by over 62,000 people.

The billionaire is known for his New Year's Resolutions and determination to accomplish his goals, which was conveyed in him not only learning Mandarin, but going to China to give a speech in it and promote Facebook in China.

Zuckerberg says, ‘Please only participate in the discussions if you've actually read the books and have relevant points to add. The group will be moderated to keep it focused.’ This itself could result in some 26 best sellers this coming year and ironically create more of a reading stir than any World Book Day. His first read ‘The End of Power’ by Moisés Naím, was published in 2013 and is a 300 page work on the changing nature of leadership today. Already the paperback appears temporarily out of stock in

The big question is whether this is a whim or a strategic business move. It could catapult Facebook into the leading social reading position, but will they want a cut from their ‘halo’ effect? Will they want to sell direct and create their own retail proposition? Is it about creating an active reading community that they can mine in many ways to make money? Will the community expand past Zuckerberg’s reading list or be solely focused on it? Will Zuckerberg’s taste be restricted and prove unappealing, or be widened, or even bought by the highest bidder?

Perhaps it is just a new Year’s resolution, that if it works will continue past 2015 and if it doesn’t, will be like many other resolutions and be lost to history. 

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