Facebook users in Latin America will have a chance
to pepper Mark Zuckerberg with questions next
week when he heads to Bogota, Colombia, for
Facebook’s first international townhall Q&A.
The social network has held two Q&A sessions so
far, both in the U.S., but this third one could see
some grittier topics raised, judging from questions
submitted so far online.
“Latin American countries have many problems like
socioeconomic inequality, lack of education and
violations against free expression. How could
Facebook be used as a tool to try to fix [these]
problems, working along with the governments of
each country?” asked one Colombian teenager.
It was one of more than a thousand comments
submitted Friday in the lead-up to the event, which
will take place Wednesday and be broadcast online.
The teenager also wanted to know if Facebook
could organize a public awareness campaign to
dispel stereotypes around drug trafficking in
Colombia.
Others have concerns about access to the Internet.
“How will Facebook help Latin American people to
be more connected to the Internet considering the
difficulties of our region?” one person asked.
Zuckerberg will take questions from a live audience
as well as questions submitted online. Anyone can
submit questions, though the event is geared
toward people in Colombia and Latin America.
Questions in both Spanish and English have been
submitted in advance.
A person from Ecuador wanted to know how
Facebook can help with technology education.
“A while back you mentioned how important it is for
people to learn basic programming and coding. …
Would you consider opening up a series of
educational centers across the country … to focus
specifically on those subjects and make it
affordable for people?”
Some questions touch on issues Facebook is trying
to address through its Internet.org project, which
seeks to bring affordable Internet to parts of the
world where it’s absent today. The Q&A might
reveal new information about Facebook’s
Internet.org plans in the region.
Other users have questions about Facebook’s
language translation tools, while some want to
know if it will back startups in Colombia.
The two previous town halls tended to address
lighter topics, including why Facebook required
users to install Messenger, the growth of video and
Zuckerberg’s wardrobe, though questions about
education and entrepreneurship surfaced too.
For the upcoming Q&A, people still have plenty of
questions about Facebook features—especially
requests for new ones.
“Can you install an ‘I’ve read this’ button so we
won’t continue to see post[s] we have already read
several times?” asked a user from St. Petersburg,
Florida, whose question garnered more than 80
likes.
Some are bored with the look of Facebook and want
more options to customize their profiles.
“Why [is] Facebook blue and not orange?” wrote a
person from Chile.
“Can you add an option to change the Facebook
theme?” said another.
Several others wanted a way to publish audio posts
instead of just text and video.
One of the questions for Zuckerberg was deeply
personal and philosophical.
“You are rich enough to not be motivated anymore
by money,” a user wrote. “You and your company
are well known enough not to be motivated by
recognition, and Facebook’s powerful ability to act
as a catalyst continues to grow. So I would like to
know, what motivates you now?”

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