Facebook "Likes" BART

Close on the heels of multibillion-dollar deals to acquire WhatsApp and Oculus and rumors that it may buy drone maker Titan Aerospace, Facebook announced a new long-term strategic alliance with the San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District, better known as BART. It's intended to extend Internet connectivity and improve the customer experience throughout the mass transit system.
 
Under the terms of the tie-up, Facebook will invest at least $1 billion to install WiFi throughout BART’s transportation network, enabling riders to access free Internet service via mobile devices during their commutes. Facebook will also make significant investments in related infrastructure, including station furniture, signage, ticketing, vehicles and maintenance facilities. In return, Facebook will participate in strategic decision-making and provide operational guidance to BART.
 
BART chief administrator Richard Kaufman stated: “We couldn’t be more excited to partner with Facebook, which will provide the long-term investment needed to maintain the high standard of service Bay Area residents have come to expect from BART. We expect this merger will be a model for public-private partnerships for years to come.”
 
Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg added: “I’m thrilled to be adding BART to the Facebook family. In addition to improving the customer experience on BART, this acquisition will give us access to location data for millions of Bay Area residents, vastly improving our ad-targeting capabilities. When an Oakland hipster secretly craves that Napa weekend, we’ll be there with the artisanal cheese.”
 
Some analysts believe the real motivation behind the acquisition lies elsewhere.

In a brief aside, Zuckerberg noted that the deal clears the way for BART to extend its rail service to Menlo Park, where Facebook has its headquarters. “Currently, BART doesn’t even serve most of Silicon Valley, the economic engine of the whole region. It’s like the rest of the Bay Area is shunning us because we’re a bunch of engineering tools or something,” Zuckerberg observed with a high-pitched giggle.  “I mean, have you partied at Stanford? Those guys are definitely not tools. Bros are solid.”
 
The Facebook founder was quick to point out that BART service will not extend to Google’s headquarters in Mountain View, California, “because of local concerns about quality of life issues, or something.”
 
Separately, Google announced plans to acquire Amtrak, the world’s largest transportation network that nobody uses.
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3 comments about "Facebook "Likes" BART ".
  1. Howie Goldfarb from Blue Star Strategic Marketing , April 2, 2014 at 7:37 a.m.
    I agree with the reason being service to Menlo Park vs the dumb statement Zuckerberg made. I like Eric Schmidt. He almost killed the Google because he is a great manager but has no vision or reality. I have quoted his buy of Admob many times where he justified the $900mil price by saying when you drive home and are thinking of dinner then Google can send a coupon for a pizza to your phone...while you drive. Uhm yeah Now comes one better. http://www.mediapost.com/publications/article/222688/facebook-likes-bart.html?edition=71418 Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg added: “I’m thrilled to be adding BART to the Facebook family. In addition to improving the customer experience on BART, this acquisition will give us access to location data for millions of Bay Area residents, vastly improving our ad-targeting capabilities. When an Oakland hipster secretly craves that Napa weekend, we’ll be there with the artisanal cheese.” I mean how will he know the hipster is secretly craving that weekend? If you post on Facebook 'Wish I could go to Napa' isn't that not secret anymore? And unless you post that on facebook unless they are listening to your phone calls, your public chatting or your SMS texting HOW WILL HE KNOW?!!! I am happy they are investing the BART needs it. But the reason is dumb and basically he announced 'So we can spy on the riders'.
  2. Howie Goldfarb from Blue Star Strategic Marketing , April 2, 2014 at 8:05 a.m.
    Seriously Eric...April Fools jokes from Media sites? Uncool. Seriously uncool. I so wanted this to be true! I think I have to boycott Media Post for a week because we are all so busy and get so much stuff in our in boxes and everyone makes these jokes.
  3. Daniel Soschin from Speaker & Blogger , April 2, 2014 at 8:57 a.m.
    Good one, you had me until the Zuckerberg quote... I knew that was crazy, even coming from Zuck... no one his media peeps would let him say "bros".