Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg calls for online voting, universal basic income

Dressed in a suit and a light blue tie, rather than his usual grey T-shirt and jeans, Zuckerberg told students that they're graduating during a challenging yet important time in which technology is displacing jobs and many people are feeling disconnected and depressed.

He even appeared to tear up a little bit at the end while telling the story of an undocumented immigrant he met with dreams of someday going to college.

In his commencement speech Thursday, Zuckerberg spoke of creating a world where objective exists for everyone and community can be strengthened for future generations. "Right now our society is way over-indexed on rewarding success and we don't do almost enough to make it easy for everyone to take lots of shots".

On Wednesday, he said his upcoming speech would "share what I've learned about our generation and the world we're all building together".

Zuckerberg's message was far from subtle: He positioned himself as the anti-Trump, preaching a form of compassionate globalism that could make a system of free trade and open immigration work for those it's left behind - a stark contrast from President Trump's inward-looking approach. "But today, technology and automation are eliminating jobs. This is not a battle of nations, it is a battle of ideas".

He said the challenge his generation faces is to help people in their communities and around the world find a "sense of purpose" - a theme he returned to throughout the speech.

Although he could not give any specific solutions to the graduates of Harvard, Mark Zuckerberg encouraged them to think about the question of risk taking.

On Wednesday, Zuckerberg made a 24-minutes long Facebook Live video from his Harvard dorm room when he went back there. "But this idea was so clear to us - that all people want to connect". Mark told them that because of Facemash, he thought he would get kicked out so he threw a big party. If I had to support my family growing up instead of having time to code, if I didn't know I'd be fine if Facebook didn't work out, I wouldn't be standing here today.

"Movies and pop culture get this all wrong".

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg acknowledges a cheer from the crowd before receiving an honorary Doctor of Laws degree, as fellow honorary degree recipient actor James Earl Jones (L) looks on, during the 366th Commencement Exercises at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, U.S., May 25, 2017. And it's tough to care about people in other places when we don't first feel good about our lives here at home.

  • Zachary Reyes