Mark Zuckerberg’s personal wealth has fallen by more than $6 billion (roughly Rs. 44,790 cores) in a few hours, knocking him down a notch on the list of the world’s richest people, after a whistleblower came forward and outages took Facebook’s flagship products offline. A selloff sent the social-media giant’s stock plummeting 4.9 percent on Monday, adding to a drop of about 15 percent since mid-September.
The stock slide on Monday sent Zuckerberg’s worth down to $121.6 billion (roughly Rs. 9,06,050 crores), dropping him below Bill Gates to No. 5 on the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. He’s down from almost $140 billion (roughly Rs.10,43,150 crores) in a matter of weeks, according to the index. On September 13, the Wall Street Journal began publishing a series of stories based on a cache of internal documents,
revealing that Facebook knew about a wide range of problems with its products — such as Instagram’s harm to teenage girls’ mental health and misinformation about the January 6 Capitol riots — while downplaying the issues in public. The reports have drawn the attention of government officials, and on Monday, the whistleblower revealed herself.
In response, Facebook has emphasised that the issues facing its products, including political polarisation, are complex and not caused by technology alone. “I think it gives people comfort to assume that there must be a technological or a technical explanation for the issues of political polarisation in the United States,” Nick Clegg, Facebook’s vice president of global affairs, told CNN.