"How Facebook's 'Move Fast and Break Things' Motto Changed the Tech Industry" "How Facebook's 'Move Fast and Break Things' Motto Changed the Tech Industry"

"How Facebook's 'Move Fast and Break Things' Motto Changed the Tech Industry"

  TechMash[Updated on:Jun-21-2023]      |  Reading Time: About 5 minutes

The motto "move fast and break things" was popularized by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg in the early days of the company. The idea was that by iterating quickly and releasing new features frequently, Facebook could stay ahead of the competition and disrupt the status.

This approach worked well for Facebook in the early days, as it allowed the company to grow rapidly and become one of the most successful technology companies in the world. However, as Facebook grew larger and more complex, the "move fast and break things" approach began to have unintended consequences.

For example, Facebook's early algorithms were designed to maximize engagement, which led to the spread of misinformation and hate speech on the platform. Additionally, Facebook's data collection practices were often opaque and invasive, which raised concerns about privacy and security.

In recent years, Facebook has come under increasing scrutiny for its role in spreading misinformation and facilitating the spread of hate speech. The company has also been criticized for its data collection practices and its lack of transparency.

As a result of these criticisms, Facebook has begun to move away from the "move fast and break things" approach. The company is now placing more emphasis on safety, privacy, and transparency.

It remains to be seen whether Facebook will be able to successfully transition to a more responsible approach to innovation. However, the company's experience shows that the "move fast and break things" approach can have serious consequences.

The Pros and Cons of "Move Fast and Break Things"

The "move fast and break things" approach has both pros and cons. On the one hand, it can lead to rapid innovation and disruption. On the other hand, it can also lead to unintended consequences, such as the spread of misinformation and hate speech.

Here are some of the pros of the "move fast and break things" approach:

Here are some of the cons of the "move fast and break things" approach:

"Move fast and break things" was a famous motto coined by Facebook in its early days, emphasizing the company's focus on rapid innovation and iteration. However, it's important to note that this motto has evolved over time, and Facebook has since revised it to "Move fast with stable infrastructure" to emphasize the importance of maintaining a stable and secure platform.

While embracing agility and innovation is important for many businesses, it is crucial to balance it with responsible practices. Here are a few considerations:

  1. Responsibility: Moving fast should not come at the expense of ethics, privacy, or user/customer safety. It's important to prioritize the well-being of your customers, employees, and stakeholders while driving innovation.

  2. Risk Management: Moving fast without careful consideration can lead to unintended consequences. It's important to assess risks and implement measures to mitigate them. Conduct thorough testing and quality assurance to minimize potential disruptions or negative impacts.

  3. Continuous Learning: Moving fast should be accompanied by a culture of continuous learning and improvement. Emphasize feedback loops, data analysis, and customer/user feedback to iterate and refine your products or services.

  4. Sustainability: Rapid changes and disruptions can have unintended consequences on the environment, society, and long-term business viability. Consider sustainable practices and their impact on the broader ecosystem.

  5. Collaboration and Communication: Moving fast requires effective collaboration and communication within the team and across departments. Clear goals, roles, and responsibilities should be established to align efforts and minimize friction.

Ultimately, the decision to "break things faster" or prioritize speed must be considered within the context of your specific business and industry. It's crucial to balance agility with responsible practices, ensuring that you're delivering value while maintaining integrity and sustainability.


The "move fast and break things" approach is a double-edged sword. It can be a powerful tool for innovation, but it can also lead to serious consequences. Companies that adopt this approach need to be aware of the risks and take steps to mitigate them.

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