Facebook's Timeline, From Humble Startup to Web Behemoth in 7 Steps

PHOTO: Mark Zuckerberg at the 2014 Breakthrough Prizes Awarded in Fundamental Physics and Life Sciences Ceremony at NASA Ames Research Center, Dec. 12, 2013, in Mountain View, Calif.

Ten years ago today, in a Harvard College dorm room, then-20-year-old Mark Zuckerberg laid the groundwork for a social network intended mainly to help his classmates find people to date.

He called it: The Facebook.

In the decade since, Facebook has become a cornerstone of the digital age, linking more than a billion people, and bestowing wealth to its founder, also in the billions.

2004: On Feb. 4, Zuckerberg launched thefacebook.com. Six days after the site went live, three Harvard seniors Cameron Winklevoss, Tyler Winklevoss, and Divya Narendra, would accuse Zuckerberg of stealing the idea for which he was originally paid to produce for them. The site was intended as a directory of Harvard students only, but within months thousands of students from elite colleges across the country had joined the network.

PHOTO: 2004 -- original page (weve got this from FB)
Facebook
PHOTO: 2004 -- original page (we've got this from FB)

2006: Facebook expands registration, allowing not just students, but their parents and friends from around the world to connect through the network. That same year Facebook launched the News Feed feature.

PHOTO: 2006 -- FB opens to everyone
Getty Images
PHOTO: 2006 -- FB opens to everyone

2008: Facebook becomes available as an iPhone app. With the site now in users' pockets and at their fingertips round the clock, members become increasingly addicted to checking in on friends and updating their status.

PHOTO: Facebook Inc.s mobile application is demonstrated on an Apple Inc. iPhone at Facebooks headquarters in Palo Alto, Calif. Sept. 8, 2009.
Tony Avelar/Getty Images
PHOTO: Facebook Inc.'s mobile application is demonstrated on an Apple Inc. iPhone at Facebook's headquarters in Palo Alto, Calif. Sept. 8, 2009.

2009: It was five years after the site's launch that engineers introduced a feature that has since become synonymous with the network, the "Like" button. The button allows users to indicate their appreciation of another user's content. In 2013, a federal judge ruled liking something on Facebook was a form of protected free speech.

PHOTO: A view of Facebooks Like button, May 10, 2012, in Washington.
Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images
PHOTO: A view of Facebook's "Like" button, May 10, 2012, in Washington.

2010: "The Social Network," a film starring Jesse Eisenberg and written by Aaron Sorkin, depicts the early days of the company's founding, focusing on the controversy between Zuckerberg, his co-founders and the Winklevoss twins. Sorkin won a screenwriting award for the movie.

PHOTO: Left to right, Justin Timberlake, Andrew Garfield and Jesse Eisenberg attend La Red Social (The Social Network) premiere at the Proyecciones Cinema, Oct. 6, 2010, in Madrid.
Fotonoticias/Getty Images
PHOTO: Left to right, Justin Timberlake, Andrew Garfield and Jesse Eisenberg attend "La Red Social" (The Social Network) premiere at the Proyecciones Cinema, Oct. 6, 2010, in Madrid.

2012: On Feb. 1, the company filed for a $5 billion initial public offering, one of the largest IPO's for a technology company to date.

PHOTO: Screens display the start of trading in Facebook shares at the NASDAQ stock exchange in Times Square in New York, May 18, 2012.
Emmanuel Dunand/AFP/GettyImages
PHOTO: Screens display the start of trading in Facebook shares at the NASDAQ stock exchange in Times Square in New York, May 18, 2012.

2014: Facebook turns 10. Zuckerberg, now estimated to be worth $19 billion, released an open letter thanking users for their support and claiming the company succeeded because its founders "cared more" about connecting the world.

PHOTO: Mark Zuckerberg at the 2014 Breakthrough Prizes Awarded in Fundamental Physics and Life Sciences Ceremony at NASA Ames Research Center, Dec. 12, 2013, in Mountain View, Calif.
Steve Jennings/Getty Images
PHOTO: Mark Zuckerberg at the 2014 Breakthrough Prizes Awarded in Fundamental Physics and Life Sciences Ceremony at NASA Ames Research Center, Dec. 12, 2013, in Mountain View, Calif.

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