Early Facebook Investor On Meeting Mark Zuckerberg

Business Insider speaks with Roger McNamee, an early Facebook investor and author of the new book “Zucked.” McNamee first met Mark Zuckerberg in 2006 and quickly became a mentor to the tech CEO. McNamee explains how Zuckerberg has changed since their first awkward meeting.

Following is a transcript of the video.

Kif: I wanna get to Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg because they’re immensely powerful people. How did you meet Mark Zuckerberg?

Roger: So 2006, I got an email from a guy named Chris Kelly. He was the Chief Privacy Officer at Facebook. He says, “My boss has a huge business issue, and he doesn’t know how to solve it, and he needs to talk to somebody who’s been around a long time but has no conflicts. Would you take a meeting?”

Now, Facebook was 2 years old. Mark was 22. I was 50. And they had $9 million in sales the year before, and they got it basically from, you know, pizza ads. They didn’t even have News Feed yet. They were still just college campuses and high school students. But it was already obvious that he’d broken the code on social.

I take the meeting. He comes in my office. I go, “Look, you don’t know me, I don’t know you, I need to tell you something.” I said, “If it hasn’t already happened, either Microsoft or Yahoo is gonna offer a billion for the company.” And I gave him a whole bunch of explanations about what’s gonna happen, like your management team, your parents, the board directors, everybody’s gonna tell you take the money.

It turns out the reason he was coming to see me was Yahoo had just offered a billion dollars for Facebook. I basically hypothesized precisely what was going on.

Kif: But he hit you with silence, right? This is a 23-year-old, 22-year-old. He’s CEO, the hottest thing in the Valley. What did the silence feel like? What were you thinking in that moment?

Roger: So… I described this in some detail in the book because it was a meeting unlike any I’ve ever been in, and I don’t know how many people have ever had this experience of being one-on-one in a conference room that’s set up like a living room. So we’re in sort of comfy chairs, but we’re no further apart than you and I are. And I described this thing to Mark, and he hasn’t said anything yet. I mean, he’s introduced himself, and that’s it. There then ensues a silence that lasted almost five minutes.

I challenge you to be one-on-one with somebody and have them pantomiming thinker poses for five minutes and you not be on the verge of screaming. I mean, at about the three-minute mark, my fingernails were implanted in the cushions of the side of the couch. And at the four-minute mark, I’m literally thinking, “I’m gonna scream if he doesn’t say something.”

And when he finally relaxes and says something, I mean, I have no idea what’s just been happening. I’ve never been in a meeting where anybody ever did that before, but it’s also in some ways really amazingly cool because I’ve said something, and he’s thinking so hard about it and trying to decide, “Do I trust this guy I’ve never met before?”

So when he relaxes and starts talking to me, he’s paying me a huge compliment. And that part’s really obvious. It was obvious that this was… His first reflex was not to blurt out what was going on, and I’m looking that as, “Wow, in an entrepreneur who’s only 22, that’s a really good sign.” That level of caution, that level of listening, that level of thinking, I mean, I was already impressed before he came in, but after that, I’m going, “Wow, he is really one in a billion.

“So I ask him, “Do you wanna sell it?” And he said, “No, I don’t.”

Kif: Yeah, how have Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg changed since then?

Roger: I wonder because I don’t get to talk to them anymore. My last interaction with either one of them was October of 2016, and the last interaction with anybody at Facebook was February 2017, and they have very consciously not communicated with me since. So I can’t be certain.

All I can tell is from what I see. The Mark that I knew was really idealistic. He had this vision of connecting everyone in the world. The same way Google had a vision of collecting all the world’s information. He was gonna connect everybody, and he was so convinced of the merit of that idea that I think he truly believed that any means necessary to get there was appropriate.

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Early Facebook Investor On Meeting Mark Zuckerberg

Weed-growing nuns smoke & sell marijuana to ‘heal the world’

Despite coming under threat from Californian authorities, two weed-growing nuns known as the ‘Sisters of the Valley’, continued to cultivate marijuana, which they use to make medicinal salves, tinctures and oils, at their abbey in Merced, Sunday.

Sister Kate and Sister Darcy, who began their business last year, have developed their own formula of topical cream containing drops containing Cannabidiol (CBD), which is a non-psychoactive ingredient unlike tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).

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Surviving an Islamic State Massacre (Extra Scene from ‘Shia Militias Vs. The Islamic State’)

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Last summer, the group known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) swept from Syria into northern Iraq, routing Iraqi security forces and seizing the city of Mosul. Soon afterward, the group declared the establishment of a dubious “caliphate” in the area it controls and rebranded itself the Islamic State. With Iraq’s army weakened and radical militants advancing on Baghdad, the country’s Iran-backed Shia militias — which have their own history of sectarian abuses — fought back, halting the Islamic State’s advance.

The militias have successfully combated Islamic State fighters on the ground with the assistance of air strikes from a US-led military coalition. But their growing influence within Iraq’s government amid accusations that they have harmed Sunnis in areas that they control has led many to fear that the militias threaten the country’s fragile sectarian and political balance.

In this extra scene, VICE News meets a survivor of the Camp Speicher massacre which took place in Tikrit, where the Islamic State claimed to have killed more than 1,700 soldiers. He describes in detail how Iraqi soldiers were systematically captured, subjected to torture, and then executed by Islamic State militants in June 2014, and how he managed to escape the massacre.

Watch “The Islamic State (Full Length)” – http://bit.ly/1DlLA12

Watch “The Battle for Iraq” – http://bit.ly/16YRwQX

Watch “Syria: Wolves in the Valley” – http://bit.ly/1Clw9C6

Read “Islamic State Loyalists Have Reportedly Kidnapped 30 Hazara Shias in Afghanistan” – http://bit.ly/1JNj0LE

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The Battle for Iraq: Shia Militias vs. the Islamic State (Trailer)

Watch the full length – http://bit.ly/1EgHqG8

Last summer, the group known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) swept from Syria into northern Iraq, routing Iraqi security forces and seizing the city of Mosul. Soon afterward, the group declared the establishment of a dubious “caliphate” in the area it controls and rebranded itself the Islamic State. With Iraq’s army weakened and radical militants advancing on Baghdad, the country’s Iran-backed Shia militias — which have their own history of sectarian abuses — fought back, halting the Islamic State’s advance.

The militias have successfully combated Islamic State fighters on the ground with the assistance of air strikes from a US-led military coalition. But their growing influence within Iraq’s government amid accusations that they have harmed Sunnis in areas that they control has led many to fear that the militias threaten the country’s fragile sectarian and political balance.

VICE News traveled to Iraq in December to witness firsthand how Shia militias are taking the fight to the Islamic State, and to document the fallout of their controversial rise to power.

More from VICE News:
The Islamic State (Full Length): http://bit.ly/1peSag2
The Battle for Iraq: http://bit.ly/16I25Yt
Syria: Wolves in the Valley – http://bit.ly/175zUE5

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A City Left in Ruins: The Battle for Aleppo

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Until the civil war reached it two years ago, Aleppo was Syria’s largest city and the country’s commercial and industrial hub. Now the ancient city lies in ruins, 70 percent of its population has fled, and those who remain live under siege. Rebel-held areas are under constant bombardment by barrel bombs — crudely improvised explosive devices that are dropped from government aircraft.

As rebel and government forces struggle for total victory, VICE filmmaker Medyan Dairieh followed the volunteers of Aleppo’s Civil Defense, a civilian rescue organization, who risk their lives daily as the first responders to government airstrikes in a city seemingly abandoned by the outside world.

Click to watch “Ghosts of Aleppo (Part 1)” – http://bit.ly/Ghosts-of-Aleppo

Watch “Syria: Wolves in the Valley: https://news.vice.com/video/syria-wolves-of-the-valley

Video Shows Massive Hotel Explosion in Aleppo – https://news.vice.com/article/video-shows-massive-hotel-explosion-in-aleppo

Read about barrel bombs in Aleppo – https://news.vice.com/article/in-aleppo-it-used-to-rain-scuds-now-it-rains-barrel-bombs

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Al-Qaeda Hospital Massacre In Yemen

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On December 5, 2013, in an attack that went largely underreported by the world’s media, al Qaeda gunmen, dressed in government military uniform, casually slaughtered 52 innocent civilians in Sanaa, Yemen’s capital. The Al-Oradi hospital sits within the same compound as the Yemeni ministry of defense, where al Qaeda alleged that drone strikes were directed from. Instead of targeting the ministry, however, the attackers killed the security guards manning the side gate of the hospital, then spent hours calmly stalking its corridors, shooting doctors, nurses, and even patients lying in their beds. In grim pictures captured by surveillance cameras, one gunman is seen approaching a group of terrified hospital staff. At first they don’t flinch, and almost seem to be awaiting instructions, until the attacker reveals a hand grenade, pulls out the pin, and tosses it at them as if he were throwing a ball to a puppy.

Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) usually avoids targeting civilians and even provides some form of governance in the small areas they control in Yemen. This goes some way to explaining why it enjoys some level of support in this war-torn country. But when this footage was aired on national TV, even AQAP supporters were horrified, and it was compelled to make an apology. In a video statement, its military leader, Qasim al-Raymi, acknowledged “our mistake and guilt,” claiming that the nine attackers had been ordered not to enter the hospital. He continued: “We offer our apology and condolences to the victims’ families. We accept full responsibility for what happened in the hospital and will pay blood money for the victims’ families.” Al-Raymi added: “We are continuing our jihad.”

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Syria’s Unending Rebel Conflict: Wolves of the Valley

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2013 was a bad year for the Syrian rebels. While the mainstream rebels struggled to defend their frontlines from the resurgent Assad regime, a renegade al Qaeda offshoot, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), launched a series of assaults on the formerly-dominant FSA brigades from behind, capturing their strongholds in rebel-held northern Syria and executing their commanders. Now the rebels are fighting back.

A coalition of former FSA brigades, funded by Saudi Arabia and rebranded as the Syrian Revolutionaries Front (or SRF), launched a surprise offensive against ISIS in the spring of 2014, in a campaign supported by both the Saudi and US governments. VICE News was the first western TV crew into Northern Syria for 6 months, embedding with the SRF as they reimposed their rule over the country’s northwestern Idlib province. What we witnessed was a brief window into a complex and morally ambiguous conflict with no end in sight.

Read Aris Roussinos’ article “Running With the Wolves of Syria” on vicenews.com
https://news.vice.com/articles/in-photos-running-with-wolves-of-the-syria

Check out the first dispatch from “Syria: The Long War”

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