Anxious to know what Mark Zuckerberg is reading, and to discuss books with the Facebook founder? He’s offering you — and everyone else on the social network — a chance to do just that.
Zuckerberg says he presents himself with a personal challenge each year, such as learning a language or meeting new people. At the end of 2014, he decided to crowdsource this year’s challenge. He posted a request for suggestions, and received hundreds, including visiting schools to talk about the online bullying problem, becoming a Christian, and reading a new book each month.
The Facebook founder noticed, in fact, that many of the suggestions centered on books, including specific suggestions to read certain Holy Books, calls to read about different countries and cultures, and a suggestion to read books picked by other people.
Mark Zuckerberg created his own challenge from those suggestions: he plans to read a new book every two weeks, and share it in discussion with the Facebook community.
Many of you proposed reading challenges. Cynthia Greco suggested I read one book a month that another person chooses — and got 1,900 likes on her suggestion. Rachel Brown, Bill Munns, Marlo Kanipe and others suggested I read the Bible. My friend and colleague Amin Zoufonoun suggested I read and learn everything I can about a new country each week.
He’s created a page for the challenge: A Year Of Books.
Zuckerberg says the books chosen will reflect a desire to learn about other cultures, beliefs, histories, and technologies, and as the community reads each selected book, discussion will take place on the Facebook page.
He’s starting with he End Of Power by Moises Naim. Focusing on the change in how authority figures hold and exercise power, the book posits that power isn’t just shifting, but decaying, and that those in positions of power find that authority more at risk than ever before.
Zuckerberg’s initiative has already begun to receive complaints: many who say they can’t afford the book, that it is difficult to btain in some countries, or that the read-along will be over by the time shipping can be managed are calling on the Facebook creator to find a way to solve their problems.
Some have asked Zuckerberg to provide digital copies to those who want to read along, and others have asked for discounts or coupon codes to aid in purchase. More moderate and achievable suggestions have been offered as well, such as choosing books a month ahead of time, to give ample time for readers to obtain them, and considering price and e-book availability in the selection.
Mark Zuckerberg’s initiative isn’t already doomed, though — the page already has over 93k likes, and many people seem excited to join in.[photo credit: Andrew Feinberg]