Mark Zuckerberg, founder and CEO of Facebook, held his first live Q&A session over Facebook Live yesterday evening. Facebook Live is the social network's new feature that lets any user broadcast a video live and then save it after he or she is done taping. At yesterday's session, Facebook users could see the session being live streamed on their Facebook page and type their questions for Zuckerberg in the comments box.
A veteran of many town hall meetings held in different cities across the world, Zuckerberg remarked at one point during the Q&A, "No I am not a lizard." This was his playful allusion to a conspiracy theory, that supposedly claims that the world's most powerful people are actually lizards in human guises.
After paying homage to victims of the Orlando shooting, Zuckerberg kicked off the Q & A with answering a user's query about Facebook allowing folders to store stuff separately.
Zuckerberg said that instead of folders, Facebook uses groups to club content together. "There are always things that your friends might not be interested in but you are passionate about that. For instance, I have a Hungarian sheep dog named Beast. So, I am a part of a lot of Hungarian sheep dog groups on Facebook," he said.
Answering questions on mentoring, education, and connectivity which were being asked by people who had logged on to the session from all over the world, Zuckerberg remarked at one point that instead of waiting for someone to guide you, you should look around yourself to learn. He added that he learns from Facebook employees around him. Zuckerberg also emphasised the need to spread education all over the world and how, to work towards that goal, it was important for people to have access to the Internet. (Free Basics, we get it Mark!)
There was plenty of discussion about Virtual Reality (VR) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) as well. At Facebook's developers' conference, F8, held earlier this year, these two technological developments were seen as being the key to the social network's future. Zuckerberg said yesterday that Virtual Reality will change social interactions in a big way.
"In future, we can all be in one space having this chat. One of you can pop in for a few seconds ask a question and have an interaction. Same way, AI will play a big role. From understanding human emotions to solving medical problems, we will be relying on AI," Zuckerberg said.
The mood turned a lot lighter when comedian Jerry Seinfeld walked in. He chatted with Zuckerberg about his daily routine, asking him among other things about how he works out, and how he uses his mobile phone. Zuckerberg spoke about his cycling habits and the arm fracture that he suffered recently. He also mentioned that he was training for a triathlon.
Another light moment involved a current resident of Zuckerberg's first house in Palo Alto asking him which room he used to live in. In his response, Zuckerberg recalled the early days of Facebook and spoke of the kind of features that they had built into that home.
The Q&A was interesting and without any controversies. Zuckerberg avoided tricky questions on net neutrality and on Facebook's algorithms for news feeds. It is clear that the world's leading social networking site is investing heavily in videos and live question formats.