Mark Zuckerberg's dad, Edward, is a dentist in Dobbs Ferry, NY. We got some sense of the guy from the goofy letter he sent out to prospective patients claiming to be "literally the father of Facebook." But he's not so blatant about his Facebook connection any more.

According to a profile in today's LA Times, Zuck's dad is, unsurprisingly, a strong proponent of technology. He's got all the latest gizmos and gadgets installed at his practice, and is a big fan of promoting his business on Facebook. But he's learned the hard way that it's better to advertise on Facebook and not with it.

"Zuckerberg has mostly ignored people who post comments about his son on the dental office Facebook wall. In person, he grows visibly uncomfortable when asked about him. (Mark was equally reticent and would not comment about his father.)

"If I wanted to put a poster of my son on the cover of Time magazine somewhere in the waiting room, I guess I could, but I just choose not to," he said flatly.

Zuckerberg's restraint may be due in part to the backfiring of a recent effort to capitalize on his son's fame. In a marketing letter sent to prospective patients this year, Zuckerberg declared, "I am literally the Father of Facebook!"

The backlash was immediate. Time magazine, which named Mark Zuckerberg its 2010 Person of the Year, mocked his dad in its online edition, comparing the ham-handed marketing plug to "one of those hilarious e-mails with wild claims of being the deposed king of Nigeria who just needs a little money to get back on his feet."

Maybe this humiliating episode will inspire Zuck's dad to hole up in his basement for an all-night coding session and develop his own social network: DentistConnect. Can't wait for the movie.

[Photo of Mark Zuckerberg via Getty Images]