Mark Zuckerberg, the founder of Facebook, likes making and keeping New Year resolutions. In recent years he has learnt Mandarin, read 25 books, run one mile every day, and created a robot-butler to organise his home. But this year his New Year resolution is more high-minded than usual. ‘My personal challenge for 2017,’ he writes, ‘is to have visited and met people in every state in the US by the end of the year.’
Why should he want to do a thing like that? The reason is that, although only 32 years old, he is one of the richest people in the world and therefore seen as guilty of elitism; and, although through Facebook he enables more people to keep in touch than ever before in history, he is assumed, like all ‘elitists’, to be out of touch with ‘ordinary people’ and incapable of understanding their needs and desires.