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The Social Network, A Movie Review with Comparisons to Corporate Life

October 28, 2010

I’m rarely first in line to many movies and the Social Network is the same, I just saw it last Saturday night.  I realize that the movie didn’t tell the exact story, but I’m sure there were enough similarities to be close.

CAPITALISM, WHY OUR COUNTRY IS GREAT AND THE BEST ECONOMIC SYSTEM IN HISTORY

My first impressionism was thank the good Lord for Capitalism.  There may have been some rough issues with the ongoings of the start up, but that we can live in a country where entrepreneurship and the ability to start a company, create jobs  and have a shot at success should be celebrated.  I want an environment where you can make it, or make it big, which is what is great about this country….The American Dream.  The idea that we should re-distribute wealth because some do better than others is nonsense. One of the best lines in the movie came at the deposition when Zuckerberg answered if he stole Facebook from the Winklescarfs, “if you guys were the inventors of the Facebook, then you would have invented the Facebook”…ouch.  It took hard work, vision and of course a couple of lucky breaks, but would this come out of the current environments in Venezuela, Iran, North Korea….I’m open to any examples?.   That Zuckerberg had an idea and was able to become a billionaire gives real hope to everyone.  Build a better Mousetrap and the world will beat a path to your door………………………….but only in the free world.

<sarcasm>

WHY I’M GLAD IT TOOK PLACE IN hARVARD (lower case intentional)

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That (at least) the 2nd dropout from harvard (lowercase emphasis mine) became a billionaire shows that an Ivy League credential is not what it used to be, nor is it necessary or as prestigious as it once was (unless you are a dropout billionaire) .  Another great line in the movie that the Winkledoofuss’s were mad because they didn’t get their way such as they had all their pampered life was epic.  We don’t live in the entitlement world (or shouldn’t). I’ve worked with Finklehorsespatoots from all of the Ivy league skools (sp on purpose) as well as those like Duke, USC, UNC-CH, Notre Dame, columbia, princeton who take college snobbery to the wrong level.  Proud of your school is one thing, elitism is another….guess which one is appreciated or listened to? These institutions are reducing themselves to credentialed, not necessarily educated.  Guess which ones are laughed at and not considered worth the money they charge? For the most part, the extra money they paid for their education was a waste that could have been invested and would be worth more.  The reality is most are doing the same job for the same money.  It got to the point in one of my jobs at IBM when someone would brag that they had a harvard MBA, someone would comment in public what a waste of money that was for the person.  The rest of us would know to work around that person as they would just be a hindrance to our ability to get any work done.  They were almost pariahs to everyone else being the snowflakes they usually turned out to be.

It takes a dream and passion to see it to fruition, otherwise you are a lemming in the working world.  No degree earns you the right to do anything but try.  I also subscribe that things are not equal, nor should they be.   Some get more than others, be it because they are smarter, work harder or some combination of both.  If you get a lucky break, consider it a bone, but it’s not an entitlement.

The plaintiffs didn’t have the ability to pull off what Zuckerberg did and they wound up sucking on the hind teat of his success.  You could tell that the lawyers got as much as the clients he settles with through billing and retainers on that settlement.  Might as well include lawyers in the offended since it looks like I’m growing that list in this blog.  This brings me to another of my favorite scene’s, the best answer I’ve ever heard at a deposition.  I wish I’d said it although I’ve said something close I’ll admit.

HARD WORK

Facebook didn’t just succeed because of luck (maybe luck in the timing) and some who didn’t see it’s potential got left behind, but the key to it’s success like most things is ability and hard work.  Although I work for a big company now, I cut my teeth with entrepreneurs who gave every drop of blood, sweat and many times their personal life to make something they believed in a success.  Most are at least Millionaires now and I don’t begrudge a one of them.  They took the risk and deserve the reward.  I only wish more would make it so they could hire more people and reduce unemployment,  restart and grow the economy  This will be the turn around our current economic situation needs, and much faster than our present Keynesian politicians.

REALISM OF THE FILM

I thought they captured the timing and semantics of the period correctly  I was noticing the coding on screen, the Apache servers and that Zuckerberg edited his blog in HTML.  I even noticed that the cell phones were time period appropriate.  What hasn’t changed is College partiers.   Not that I know that much about college partying, but I’m sure some of that really happens.  Although they said he wasn’t an asshole, but that he tried so hard to be one was partly true.  He didn’t have to try.

REAL LIFE

It turns out that Zuckerberg is a suck up to the President to promote Facebook.  Why someone so smart would let himself be manipulated is beyond me.  He didn’t realize that he let a campaign go on for the youth vote who are so easily manipulated by MTV, The Comedy Channel and such outlets.   Older, wiser and those hurt more by the economy know better than to support this or be buffaloed by this sort of trick.  The fact that Fakebook is censuring political groups that are not liberal and letting terrorists plan attacks or post mendacious things about moral groups shows who they and Zuck really are, biased.

EPILOGUE

This was a good movie that shows you can still make it in the business world.  Bill Gates, Michael Dell, Steve Jobs and many others are all good examples of the American dream that Zuckerberg lives.  By now it is out on DVD, I even TiVo’d it the other day an watched it again just to see success.  I am glad we live in the part of the world where you have the chance to succeed or fail.  But if you succeed, you usually take others with you.  A rising tide floats all boats.

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