The wealth of one of the richest people on the planet has dropped by $71 billion since the beginning of 2022, according to published reports. Mark Zuckerberg, creator of Facebook, owner of Instagram, and founder of Meta is now just the 20th richest person on the planet – a far cry from being poor, however.
Most of his wealth comes from shares that he owns in Facebook, which has caused the bulk of his financial downfall. Stock prices dropped 50 percent from about $340 a share to $170 per share this year.
“Facebook makes most of its money from advertising, and now it just doesn’t have that data anymore,” said analyst Mark Zgutowicz of Benchmark, a research and investment banking firm. “All those data signals went away, which basically means that advertisers are having trouble telling whether a campaign was successful or not.”
It appears that his creation of parent company, Meta, has not gone over well and affected stock prices. Zuckerberg’s intention with Meta was to build a digital metaverse, but its acceptance has been slow to catch on.
February 2022 showed no growth in the number of monthly users on Facebook, which contributed to the stock value decrease with a loss in advertising revenue for the platform. Facebook is also attempting to compete with TikTok with an introduction of “Reels” on Instagram, according to Brietbart. Reportedly, daily watch time of Reels is less than 10 percent of the time people spend watching those on TikTok, a China-owned platform.
Reels’ viewers spend 17.6 million hours a day watching, compared to the massive 197.8 million hours viewers watch TikTok videos.
Celebrities Kim Kardashian and Kylie Jenner in July both pleaded with Instagram to “stop copying” TikTok. With 326 million followers and 361 million followers, respectively, the sisters’ comments should make Zuckerberg sit up and take notice.
One video creator, Landen Purifoy, 22, compared his numbers of views on TikTok to Instagram and other platforms, and found he received millions of views on all platforms except on Instagram, where the counts were fewer than 100,000, according to the Daily Mail.
To draw in young viewers, Zuckerberg tried to offer free toys to entice users to hope on the proverbial “metaverse” train, according to The Sun. The expectation of Meta is that people would do everyday activities in the virtual reality. Just exactly what is that supposed to mean, and was Zuckerberg in his right mind when he had this thought? Sitting in front of a computer screen for all of life’s activities is just not reality to most people. In addition, the safety of young children online is also an inherent concern.
Zuckerberg founded the social media platform Facebook while a student at Harvard in 2004. He was offered a buyout from Yahoo in 2006 but turned it down. He controls 58 percent of the voting power at Facebook, and has pledged to give away 99 percent of his wealth in his lifetime. He has used some of his funds to purchase 840 acres on the island of Kauai in Hawaii and owns four homes that surround his primary residence in Palo Alto, Calif.