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Mark Zuckerberg Named Time Magazine's Person of the Year

Mark Zuckerberg
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

The second youngest person to make the list, the 26-year-old Facebook founder defends the site's privacy policies and talks about what's next.

At 26, Mark Zuckerberg is the second youngest person to top Time magazine's Person of the Year.

(Charles Lindbergh received the honor at 25.)

Rounding out the top 5 were the Tea party at No. 2, Wikileaks founder Julian Assange at No. 3, Afghan leader Hamid Karzai and the Chilean miners.

In an interview with Time, Zuckerberg once again opens up about The Social Network, which earned multiple Golden Globe noms Wednesday, including best motion picture, drama.

"I found it funny what details they focused on getting right. I think I owned every single T-shirt that they had me wearing," says Zuckerberg. "But the biggest thing that thematically they missed is the concept that you would have to want to do something—date someone or get into some final club—in order to be motivated to do something like this. It just like completely misses the actual motivation for what we’re doing, which is, we think it’s an awesome thing to do.”

Zuckerberg says the next five years will be a time for growth for Facebook.

"It’s about the idea that most applications are going to become social, and most industries are going to be rethought in a way where social design and doing things with your friends is at the core of how these things work," he says. "If the last five years was the ramping up, I think that the next five years are going to be characterized by widespread acknowledgment by other industries that this is the way that stuff should be and will be better.”

Zuckerberg also defends the site's privacy policies and its reluctance to provide the government with information when asked:  "We feel like it’s our responsibility to push back on that stuff, so oftentimes someone will come with a subpoena, and we’ll go to court and say, ‘We don’t think this is enough.’ Ultimately I think this stuff gets used for good.”

He doesn't think Facebook lowers the quality of people's relationships.

"That’s been a criticism that people have had for a while,” he says. “But this isn’t zero-sum. I think what we’re doing is enabling you to stay in touch with people who you otherwise wouldn’t. When I’m at home and I want to talk to my girlfriend, I don’t IM her. I walk downstairs, and we talk.”