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As Facebook, WhatsApp, and Instagram remain down, Facebook’s owner, Mark Zuckerberg, loses $7 billion in hours.

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After a whistleblower came out and outages brought Facebook Inc.’s major products offline, Mark Zuckerberg’s personal fortune dropped by over $7 billion in a matter of hours, dropping him down a notch on the list of the world’s richest individuals.

 

After a four-hour global outage that disrupted companies and unconnected billions of individuals around the world, Facebook’s co-messaging apps, WhatsApp and Instagram, remained unavailable.

 

According to Bloomberg, a selloff left the social-media giant’s shares tumbling approximately 5 percent on Monday, adding to a plunge of about 15 percent since mid-September.

 

The stock slump on Monday dropped Zuckerberg’s fortune down to $120.9 billion, pushing him below Bill Gates to No. 5 on the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. He’s lost almost $19 billion of wealth since September 13, when he was valued at nearly $140 billion, according to the index.

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The Wall Street Journal began publishing a series of stories on September 13 based on a cache of internal documents, revealing that Facebook was aware of a wide range of issues with its products — such as Instagram’s negative impact on teenage girls’ mental health and misinformation about the Capitol riots on January 6 — while downplaying the issues in public. The reports drew the attention of government officials, and the whistleblower came forward on Monday.

 

Facebook has responded by emphasizing that the difficulties confronting its products, such as political divisiveness, are complex and not just due to technological factors.

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“I think it gives people comfort to assume that there must be a technological or a technical explanation for the issues of political polarization in the United States,” Nick Clegg, Facebook’s vice president of global affairs, told CNN.

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