Don't Worry! Facebook Isn't Shutting Down

No need to worry that Facebook will shut down on March 15, as reported by the supermarket tabloid Weekly World News.

Facebook quickly dispelled rampant online rumors that the site will be shut down for good on March 15. The rumors spread after Weekly World News, best known for stories about UFOs, aliens and the like, published a story over the weekend saying that Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced he was shuttering the company because it had become too stressful for him.

Facebook's quick reply: "We didn't get the memo about shutting down, so we'll keep working away like always. We aren't going anywhere; we're just getting started."

"It's hard to believe that anyone would take this seriously," said Dan Olds, an analyst at Gabriel Consulting Group. "But Weekly World News readers probably have bigger things on their minds, like their story about aliens attacking Earth in 2011 or the story about developing the skills to be invisible and levitate."

The rumors come just a week after Goldman Sachs and Digital Sky Technologies invested $500 million in the company, which gives Facebook a valuation of $50 billion. Shortly thereafter, leaked financial documents shows that Facebook generated a profit of $355 million on $1.2 billion in revenue during the first nine months of 2010.

The financials began leaking out last Friday thanks to a not-very-secretive 101-page document that Goldman Sachs is sent to potential Facebook investors. Citing an unnamed source who had reportedly received the document, Businessweek reported that Facebook is on a path to generating $1 billion in profit this year.

Sharon Gaudin covers the Internet and Web 2.0, emerging technologies, and desktop and laptop chips for Computerworld. Follow Sharon on Twitter at @sgaudin , or subscribe to Sharon's RSS feed . Her e-mail address is sgaudin@computerworld.com .

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