A former Facecbook employee, Antonio Garcia Martinez, through his upcoming book called “Chaos Monkeys: Obscene Fortune and Random Failure in Silicon Valley” has revealed that the company’s founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg had vowed to destroy Google Plus when the website was launched in 2011.
Martinez wrote the Google Launch news hit Facebook like a bomb. “Zuck took it as an existential threat comparable to the Soviets’ placing nukes in Cuba in 1962,” an excerpt of the book, published by Vanity Fair, read.
The former employee also wrote that Google hadn’t paid any importance to Facebook during its initial days. “Google had been famously dismissive of it,” Martinez wrote adding that Google’s search business monopoly had given it a superiority complex. But later when Googlers turned to Facebook for jobs, Google took notice soon enough.
“Google instituted a policy whereby any desirable Googler who got a Facebook offer would have it beaten instantly by a heaping Google counter-offer,” wrote Martinez saying that even the ‘green lure’ was not enough to stop people from moving to Facebook. Google wanted to counter Facebook with the launch of Google plus and Martinez writes that it “was pretty good, in some ways better than Facebook.”
“Given you had a Google Plus sign-up button practically everywhere in your Google user experience, the possibility of its network growing exponentially was very real indeed,” read another excerpt.
The counter attack from Google made Zuck nervous and he declared a ‘lockdown’. “Lockdown was a state of war that dated to Facebook’s earliest days, when no one could leave the building while the company confronted some threat, either competitive or technical,” Martinez explained in his book.
Zuckerberg reportedly had delivered his first ‘lockdown speech’ on the day Google Plus was launched. “You know, one of my favorite Roman orators ended every speech with the phrase Carthago delenda est. ‘Carthage must be destroyed.’ For some reason I think of that now,” Zuckerberg said in while summing up his ‘lockdown speech’ as quoted by Martinez in his book. For Zuckerberg, Carthage meant Google Plus.