Former Facebook Exec Says Social Media Is “Ripping Apart the Social Fabric of How Society Works”

Chamath Palihapitiya is a sharp investor and executive who has become one of Facebook’s most successful alum. Before he was named one of the coolest people in Silicon Valley, he became the youngest VP in AOL’s history at the age of 26. Palihapitiya began working for AOL in 2001, where he quickly climbed the corporate ladder, becoming the head of AIM in 2004. This eventually led Palihapitiya to join Facebook, where he led the social network's mobile and international user growth initiatives, becoming the company’s longest tenured senior executive. After finding even more success at Facebook, Palihapitiya left to start his own venture fund in 2011, Social+Capital Partnership “the future of venture capital.” Instead of focusing on Facebook and social media, Palihapitiya is putting his time into structural changes he can control.

When Palihapitiya was working with Facebook, he always knew in the back of his mind that something bad would come from social media. Now, Palihapitiya believes that social media is “ripping apart the social fabric of how society works.” Social media is eroding the core foundations of how people behave with each other because they are focused on curating their lives around this perceived sense of perfection. Palihapitiya’s solution is simply to avoid using these tools so he can focus on problems that he can control including diabetes, climate changes, and education.  

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