Mark Zuckerberg the CEO of Facebook has been named Person of the Year 2010 by Times Magazine. He beat out  the Chilean Miners, Sarah Palin (the person who could “see Russia from her home”) and interestingly Liu Xiaobo who won this year’s prestigious Noble Peace Prize. Other interesting candidates included Julian Assange the founder of Wikileaks, “The Unemployed American” and Tony Hayward the former chief executive of the oil giant BP.

The social networking geekpreneur won the award for “connecting more than half a billion people and mapping the social relations among them; for creating a new system of exchanging information; and for changing how we all live our lives.” Being a billionaire at 26 & having your face on the iconic front cover of Times Magazine is quite an achievement, not to forget the fact that he is one of the youngest CEOs at the front line of  philanthropy. Zuckerberg owns about quarter of Facebook’s shares, other major stakeholders include Microsoft & Digital Sky Technologies who invested $200 million in exchange for 1.96%.

Person of the Year ... Mark Zuckerberg. Photo: Time Magazine

Person of the Year ... Mark Zuckerberg. Photo: Time Magazine

Microsoft’s investment has been named one of the cleverest moves in Silicon Valley, the folks who ridiculed Microsoft for valuing the company at a staggering $15 billion back in 2007 are holding their heads in shame. Facebook is going to grow bigger in the next couple of years and having poached some of the best engineers from Google Inc. they have the capacity to be more innovative with their platform.

I find it rather interesting that Facebook hasn’t gone IPO yet and curious as why a couple its board members have indicated that it will IPO probably after 2012. Perhaps they are building something that is going to change the way we communicate? Or are they creating a new advertising channel that goes beyond the average sponsored ads?