Last year, as part of his New Year resolutions, Silicon Valley figurehead Mark Zuckerberg pledged to travel across America. This year, his challenge will be more difficult: managing Facebook.

On Thursday (4 January), he wrote on his own timeline that his latest personal feat will be to ensure his website stays relevant – and safe – in a world that he claimed feels "anxious and divided."

He said that will include "protecting our community from abuse and hate, defending against interference by nation states, or making sure that time spent on Facebook is time well spent.

"My personal challenge for 2018 is to focus on fixing these important issues. We won't prevent all mistakes or abuse, but we currently make too many errors enforcing our policies and preventing misuse of our tools.

He added: "If we're successful this year then we'll end 2018 on a much better trajectory."

In 2017, the world's largest social network faced criticism after it emerged that mysterious Russian trolls had exploited the platform to influence the previous year's US presidential election.

Despite initially playing down the shocking reports, Zuckerberg later changed his mind.

Only a month ago, in December 2017, Facebook was forced to concede in a lengthy blog post that social media as a whole may actually be damaging the mental health of some users.

The CEO – who founded the platform in 2004 and was portrayed by Jesse Eisenberg in the hit movie The Social Network – said that web users had "lost faith" in the promise of the web, naming encryption and cryptocurrency as two interesting trends impacting tech.

"I'm interested to go deeper and study the positive and negative aspects of these technologies, and how best to use them in our services," Zuckerberg continued. "This will be a serious year of self-improvement and I'm looking forward to learning from working to fix our issues together."

Mark Zuckerberg
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg live-streamed a visit to his old dorm room at Harvard University. Justin Sullivan/Getty Images