Rhea Liu and Toni Tang
Following the birth of Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s baby girl, he announced on his Facebook page that he would “give 99% of our Facebook shares — currently worth about $45 billion — during our lives to join many others in improving this world for the next generation.”
The announcement got millions of likes in a single day. China’s version of Facebook, trendy social networking site Weibo, also exploded with the news.
Let’s check out what Chinese netizens are saying about it.
Some people mocked it…
USD 45 billion? So Mark Zuckerberg just donated enough money to buy Xiaomi? How does Lei Jun feel right now?
(Xiaomi is a Chinese unicorn company valued at USD 45 billion.)
Oh man, what will you donate for the next child? The remaining 1%?
So the remaining 1% will be about $500 million. Well, that’s enough for me to live on.
Wait, Max? Is the next one gonna be Caroline?
(Check Two Broke Girls if you don’t get it.)
Some of them are really mean…
Because he wants a son?
Wow, is Mark Zuckerberg a communist?
Some people are jealous…
The 1% left is still impossible for common people to strive for…
Mark Zuckerberg celebrated his daughter’s birth by donating all his stakes while I celebrated my firstborn by borrowing 50k from my parents…
Some people applaud it…
With that much money, the Zuckerberg couple is still keeping it real – no mansion, no luxury cars (second-hand VW and Honda), no servants and no bodyguards. They do their own chores, and babysit their baby themselves. This is already rare among the rich. Zuckerberg goes even further. He’s donating 99% of his assets. That is even more rare. I really admire him.
Let’s talk about Zuckerberg giving Facebook shares
to charity. He entrusted the shares to a charitable trust, which is managed by Mr. and Mrs. Zuckerberg. The earnings gained will in part go to charity, in part cover their own expenditures. Not to mention the annual taxes averted, the inheritance tax is also cut when passing assets to his daughter! It’s great to try and do a good deed. But, come on, let’s not compare Zuckerberg to Chinese people. Only if you have enough money can you be a philanthropist.
Some debated whether Zuckerberg is trying to avoid taxes…
Donate to his own foundation? A unique way to avoid tax in developed countries.
And some chose to defend him…
Putting aside the issue of taxes, it’s a good thing as long as there is one patient benefiting from it.
Frankly speaking, there is nothing wrong with Zuckerberg donating money, and there is also nothing wrong with us Chinese having doubts about his intention. The reason is that he is in America while we are in China. Social environment determines one’s choices. If he was born in China, maybe he would not make the donation. And if all Chinese were born in America, maybe we would not think he was putting up a show. That’s a cultural difference, and there is no right or wrong in it.
(With contributions from Danielle Li)