Facebook: 10 stories from 10 years of connecting

Juan Magdaraog
Facebook tells 10 remarkable stories about connecting people, and changing lives

MANILA, Philippines — Ten years ago, when he launched Facebook from his college dorm room, I don’t think Mark Zuckerberg imagined the scale at which his site would affect the lives of people. 

One decade gone by, the effects of Facebook transcend communication, networking, and community. In so many ways the social network has helped make a difference in the lives of millions around the world. 

To celebrate this milestone, a page has been setup featuring 10 remarkable stories of how the online social fiber that is Facebook has brought people together.

From the unlikely collaboration of a New Jersey-based artist with craftswomen from Kenya all the way to a touching story of siblings reunited, the power of social media and a connected world is mind blowing.

Of these 10 stories, 2 of them stand out for me. 

The first is “Kimmy and Will,” a love story that transcends even this life. The second is “The Conditioned,” which is about a homeless poet who realized his dream of publishing a book of poems and how he was reunited with his brothers in the process.

Love and loss told through Facebook

High school friends who would eventually end up together, Kimmy and Will’s love story is both romantic and poignant. 

Will would end up joining the Marines while Kimmy would set off for college and expand her horizons. Through their seemingly very separate worlds, love found its way.

Communication was always a challenge, especially during Will’s deployment to Afghanistan. Soon they turned to Facebook as a means of communication. 

At first they resorted to snail mail until Will’s unit received a computer allowing them to connect online. One of Will’s messages to Kimmy reads, “Guess who is a genius and got on Facebook on their iPhone? This guy haha. Pictures look amazing as do you. I sent you an email. Love you babe.”

What followed was a time of joy for Kimmy and Will. Facebook would be the glue that kept the couple going through a series of deployments until tragedy struck on Jan. 31, 2012.

54 days shy of coming home from his final deployment, Will was killed by an improvised explosive device. Kimmy’s world fell apart.

In the days and years that followed, Facebook played a part in Kimmy’s healing. Messages of love and support from family and friends flooded her Facebook page. And in her loneliest of days Kimmy sought refuge in the conversations the two shared on Facebook, finding solace that at least some of their memories are preserved. 

Homeless poet and his dream

“Hope is the heaviest weight a man can carry. It is the bane of the idealist.”

These are the words of Raimundo. A homeless man who sat at the same Sao Paulo street corner for 35 years. Raimundo’s dream was to publish a book on his passion: his poems and writing. 

On that same street corner he met Shalla Monteiro. Raimundo’s poems impressed her so much that she helped him by creating a Facebook page to feature his writing. The Facebook Page helped him realize this dream, and more.

The connected world 

These 10 stories are just some of the countless stories that have been made possible by Facebook. 

The power to instantly connect to people from across the world has changed the world we live in. The world seems a lot smaller now, something we sometimes take for granted. It is great to every now and then to look back at how amazing technology can be.

Each of us who signed up for an account has a story to share. Some are as amazing as these 10 stories featured but all of them have affected our lives one way or another. I know that my Facebook stories have changed my life.

Do you have a Facebook story to share? Send them to submit@rappler.com. — Rappler.com