The following is an adapted translation of an article written by Xi Angxiang and published on Sina Tech.

In 2004, when Mark Zuckerberg was still at Harvard University, he gave an interview in the student newspaper about his plans for Facebook.

It’s obvious he wasn’t particularly interested in profitability back then.

“Making cool things is just something I love doing,” he said, noting that he didn’t have any plans to sell the company and no real designs on when or how it would become profitable.

That’s how a lot of successful social media products get their start: engineers wanting to make something cool.

But while Zuck’s gone on to make a highly profitable product, the folks behind many other social media empires – including, arguably, China’s WeChat – have not.

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