Ben Mezrich's forthcoming Facebook exposé was sold to film producers before it was even written. The Hollywood influence helps explain why the book answers such pressing questions as, "Who might the co-founders have conceivably boned, and where?"
Far be it from money-and-technology-obsessed Silicon Valley types to fixate on the fleshy trappings of wealth; they want to know the nitty-gritty details of how a market-leading social network was born. And indeed, both Boston magazine and the New York Times, which obtained galleys of the book, note that Accidental Billionaires doesn't tell the reader much about how the site was actually assembled; instead, lustier details — well, purported details — win out.
Luke O'Brien recapped one scene for Boston:
Zuckerberg himself remains distant, a robot in a fleece. How strange, then, to see this cipher getting freaky with a coed in a bathroom. Rendering Zuckerberg and [co-founder Eduardo] Saverin as campus studs, Mezrich shows them turning out groupies in adjacent stalls.
Zuckerberg is also shown being picked up by a Victoria Secret model at a party in San Francisco (a change from the book proposal we obtained last year, which had co-founder Eduardo Saverin with the model). The pair leave together. As both the Boston and the Times note, the scene is hard to swallow; Facebook had launched just months prior. Dweeby Zuckerberg already had groupies? O'Brien, who has himself dug into Facebook's past, wrote that Zuckerberg has "been dating the same girl since the site's early days" and that there's no evidence Facebook was created so Zuckerberg could score with women.
Even Mezrich doesn't sound too confident in the hook-up scenes. From Boston:
"I just told the story that I was told by multiple sources," Mezrich explains now. "More power to Mark if that's what really happened. ...I have a feeling that Mark Zuckerberg right now could date anybody he wants to. ...Mark has done some amazing things, and if having sex with a Victoria's Secret model is one of the things that he doesn't like to read about himself, I would be surprised."
In other words, Zuckerberg should accept the tales because they're flattering. That was the stance the subjects of Mazerich's Burning Down the House seemed to take when it emerged much of that book — also turned into a movie — was fabricated. But, unlike those obscure college card sharks, Zuckerberg's ambitions extend far beyond silver screen notoriety, and the Facebook CEO is more likely to make a fuss. Indeed, his flacks have already declared that Mezrich's unreleased book sounds inaccurate. Somehow we doubt they'll leave it at that.