Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s New Year’s resolution is to meet people in real life in every US state in an effort to mend societal divisions wrought by the twin forces of technology and globalisation.
32-year-old tech giant’s boss yesterday said his personal challenge for 2017 is to have visited and met people in every state by the end of the year. That means he will travel to about 30 states in 2017, according to his Facebook post.
This is the latest personal challenge Zuckerberg has given himself. In previous years, he has built artificial intelligence for his home, learned Mandarin, read 25 books and ran 587 km.
“After a tumultuous last year, my hope for this challenge is to get out and talk to more people about how they are living, working and thinking about the future,” he wrote in the post.
“Going into this challenge, it seems we are at a turning point in history. For decades, technology and globalisation have made us more productive and connected.
This has created many benefits, but for a lot of people it has also made life more challenging. This has contributed to a greater sense of division than I have felt in my lifetime. We need to find a way to change the game so it works for everyone,” he said.
“My work is about connecting the world and giving everyone a voice. I want to personally hear more of those voices this year. It will help me lead the work at Facebook and the Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative so we can make the most positive impact as the world enters an important new period,” he said.
Facebook was widely criticised after US elections for spreading fake news, political propaganda that favoured Republican candidate Donald Trump.
Ensnared in a string of content controversies in recent months, Facebook has insisted that it is a technology company, not a media firm. But scrutiny of the site has heightened since the surprise election of Trump as US President with critics alleging the site helped spread lies via fake news stories and hoaxes.