Posted by: Catherine Holahan on March 9, 2008
Parlez-Vous Francais? Facebook does. During his March 9 keynote at South by SouthWest Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced the launch of a French-language version of his popular social networking site. The launch follows the debut of a Spanish-language site in February and a German site earlier this month.
The foreign language sites are part of a larger effort at Facebook to create Web communication tools capable of spurring social change, says Zuckerberg.
Zuckerberg began his keynote Q&A session with BusinessWeek columnist Sarah Lacy discussing how Facebook has helped members do everything from organize protests to foster cultural understanding between Western and Middle Eastern nations.
Earlier this year, millions protested in the streets of Colombia against the country’s FARC guerillas after individuals started groups on Facebook urging action.
Zuckerberg also said that young people in Lebanon expressed changed opinions of Western countries after making friends outside of religious schools through the site. “If you add up all those connections you get some profound effects,” said Zuckerberg. “We think we have a chance here to fundamentally change the way people communicate.”