This founder of WhatsApp easily lends himself to be a symbol of whatever. Facebook is buying his company for $19 billion in cash and stock. At the very least, Koum represents the new kind of immigrant whose family comes to America to seek freedom and a better way of life. But more important is the bigger picture of his journey from food stamps to huge wealth. Soon enough we might be hearing of the Jan Koum Foundation for pre-K education. Here is the New York Post coverage.
Human wiring can only absorb so much. So, the emerging symbolism of Koum as whatever could blanket, like all the recent snow in the Northeast, more standard symbols. We might come to glaze over when we hear the names Rupert Murdoch (an immigrant from Australia), Bill Gates (who made the home office possible) and Warren Buffett (who sure knows how to make a buck).
Within a year, Koum's face could be on the bulletin boards of all the classrooms in America.