Messaging and Collaboration: Facebook's IPO: 10 Decisions That Led the Social Network to Its Big Payday

By Don Reisinger  |  Posted 2012-05-17 Print this article Print
An End to College-Only

An End to College-Only

When Facebook started out, the company was only offering social networking to college students. But over time, as it realized that it might have a good idea on its hands, it decided to open it up to all users. That decision looks like a no-brainer now, but without it, Facebook would not have the 901 million active users it has now.
Facebook is slated to go public May 18, and when it does, it will post the biggest Web initial public offering in history, possibly the biggest IPO of all time. Several people at the company will become instant billionaires, while many more are poised to become millionaires. The event is arguably the biggest IPO since Google went public in 2004, and could very well prompt other prominent Web companies, like Twitter, to at least consider bringing their shares to the open market, as well. But it didn't happen overnight. In fact, since Facebook's founding in 2004, the company has made a host of decisions that have helped it grow and eventually get it to a point where it's now the world's largest social network with 901 million active users around the world. Like so many other prominent companies, Facebook has a very interesting story and the road to success, while bumpy at times, was remarkably fast and steady. Take a look at some of the decisions Facebook and its leader, Mark Zuckerberg, made over the last several years to help it get to its IPO day.
Don Reisinger is a freelance technology columnist. He started writing about technology for Ziff-Davis' Since then, he has written extremely popular columns for, Computerworld, InformationWeek, and others. He has appeared numerous times on national television to share his expertise with viewers. You can follow his every move at

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