Mark Zuckerberg Is Donating Facebook Shares Worth Billions (But You’re Likely Getting Zero)

Sharing that post does nothing more than make you look gullible in front of your friends and followers.

The latest Facebook chain letter going viral involves the controversial donation that Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan are making in honor of their daughter’s birth.

The false post being shared by many claims that if you copy and paste this post, Zuck could gift you with $4.5 million just to say thank you for using the site.

Here’s what’s being shared:

THANK YOU, MARK ZUCKERBERG, for your forward-thinking generosity! And congrats on becoming a dad!
Mark Zuckerberg has announced that he is giving away $45 billion of Facebook stock. What you may not have heard is that he plans to give 10% of it away to people like YOU and ME! All you have to do is copy and paste this message into a post IMMEDIATELY. At midnight PST, Facebook will search through the day’s posts and award 1000 people with $4.5 million EACH as a way of saying thank you for making Facebook such a powerful vehicle for connection and philanthropy.

That sounds great in theory, but it’s not happening. Much like Facebook Gold or the regularly-scheduled posts proclaiming that if you share this post all of your privacy woes will evaporate, this is false. Sharing this does nothing more than make you look gullible in front of your friends and followers.

Zuckerberg hasn’t really explained where the money is exactly going from the Chan Zuckerberg LLC. If you’re reading this, there’s a good chance none of it will end up in your pockets.

Zuckerberg discussed in an earlier post why he and Chan chose an LLC over launching a true non-profit:

By using an LLC instead of a traditional foundation, we receive no tax benefit from transferring our shares to the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, but we gain flexibility to execute our mission more effectively. In fact, if we transferred our shares to a traditional foundation, then we would have received an immediate tax benefit, but by using an LLC we do not. And just like everyone else, we will pay capital gains taxes when our shares are sold by the LLC.

Bottom line: If someone is telling you that you can win money, prevent Facebook from charging users or magically safeguard your profile just by sharing or copying and pasting something, it’s fake. Sharing it “just to be safe” or “just in case” will only annoy people connected to you.

Image courtesy of Mark Zuckerberg on Facebook. Hat tip to Mary Long at Digital Media Ghost for spotting this.