I completely agree.
First, some claim Zuckerberg didn’t build Facebook. Zuckerberg was actually hired by fellow Harvard undergraduates to build a website similar to Facebook. The more accurate accusation as that he stole the idea of Facebook. All articles on the inception of the website clearly state that Zuckerberg wrote the code himself. No one is going to claim that Zuckerberg was the next Don Knuth, Facebook was mainly hacked together using PHP over a couple of nights.
Second, some claim Zuckerberg is just in it for the money. If that were true he could have sold out a LONG time ago for around $1 billion. I think the subtext about building things just because you like to build things is that Zuckerberg is building his company not just for the money. I seriously doubt most of the posters on Slashdot, at the age of 22 would not have taken $1billion for a side project they worked on at school. It takes a special kind of person to have that resolve. Those are the people we should venerate in this country not vilify.
Third, some claim Zuckerberg is a douche. This is largely irrelevant. Most of us geeks aren’t the nicest guys in the world, let’s be real. Borderline Asperger’s/autism is rampant as is narcissism and a complete lack of humility. Find me a geek without a major personality flaw and you haven’t found a geek.
Moreover, I find it ironic that men like Bill Gates and Zuckerberg are constantly shat on here, but Steve Jobs is lauded as the second coming of Christ. If you read about the early history of Apple, you could make perfect parallels between the criticisms leveled at Zuckerberg and Jobs’s rise and fall and rise. Steve Jobs is megalomaniac clearly demonstrated sociopathic tendencies, has questionable tech credentials and could not give two shits about his customers’ opinions. And Apple is all the better for it.
So why does /. hate Zuckerberg so much? I think it is largely a generational divide. Many of you come from the gold old days of tech (command lines, walking five miles in the snow to get your code to compile, etc) and don’t really understand that just because something wasn’t challenging in a technical sense it is still HUGELY useful to millions of people. I was basically part of the first generation to use Facebook in college. It has been a great service for keeping track of friends from high school and family on the other side of the country/world. I can share pictures, stories, articles, links, lolcats and memories on one unified platform. The interface has always been super user friendly and clean. For the vast majority of college students (and increasingly everyone else) Facebook is as essential and important as Wikipedia or YouTube (the latter’s founders sold out for around $165million to Google, I should remind you). So let’s chill with the hating on Zuckerberg’s success. It’s all just a bit tacky and hypocritical.