Published on Mar 04, 2017

Who rules the world?

When it comes to the man who rules the world, Many names popup in our mind. Is it Donald Trump? The President of the largest economy on the planet. Is it Vladimir Putin? The President of Russia, who has exerted his country’s influence all over the globe. Is it Xi Jinping? The President of world’s second largest economy, China. Is it Pope Francis? Who is the spiritual leader to nearly 1.3 billion people of the world. Is it Bill Gates? The richest person alive. What about Narendra Modi or Angela Merkel?

Traditionally, the President of the United States has been considered the most powerful person on Earth. After all, Donald Trump controls the most powerful military on the planet, and has considerable influence over the $18.5 trillion US economy. But Donald Trump is beholden to systems that keep his power in check. i.e. Congress, The Supreme Court, the will of the American electorate and term limits (he will be forced to retire after 4 years and I’m sure he won’t win next time).

Vladimir Putin is the world’s most powerful person for four years running according to Forbes. During 12 years of being President of Russia (2000–2008 and 2012-Present), he has exerted his country’s influence all over the planet. Russia’s GDP grew more than 10 time in 12 years. But he is also bounded to the Russian System. But he will be forced to retire in 2018. Parliament of Russia has power to terminate him if he does anything wrong. People like Xi Jinping, Narendra Modi, Angela Merkel have same limitations. They are bounded to their country’s systems.

Pope Francis is the spiritual leader to nearly one-sixth of the world’s population, 1.3 billion people. He has made it his personal mission to transform the longstanding conservative image of the Catholic Church. In November 2016 he gave priests the power to forgive women who undergo abortions, and has continued to push for climate change reform, better management of the global refugee crisis and greater attention to persecution of religious minorities in the Middle East. He’s the world’s fifth most powerful person according to Forbes. But he’s not the one who rules the world.

So who should be the person who rules the world? Well, the answer is Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, the world’s 5th most valuable brand according to Forbes and 6th largest company on the planet by market capitalization, of which he owns 16% of the stock and controls 60% of the voting rights. He doesn’t control military or any country. His power comes from Facebook. And he has no limitations on his powers.

More than 1.2 billion people use Facebook everyday (1.9 billion monthly active users). One fourth of all time spent on the internet is spent using Facebook. For many people, Facebook literally is the internet. It’s the first place most people go to announce weddings, births, deaths, and other major life events. Facebook is increasingly the place where people consume other forms of media. Through its Free Basics program, Facebook has literally become the internet for the world’s poor.

So far, Zuckerberg has mainly used Facebook’s power to further grow Facebook. He’s used our personal data to show us relevant ads and make money. He’s acquired Facebook’s most serious competitors: WhatsApp and Instagram. He’s now competing with YouTube for video and Twitter for real time communication. He’s even creating AIs and launching satellites.

Facebook Community Update Posted by Mark Zuckerburg

Facebook knows far more about humanity — and individual humans — than any other company or government on Earth. 800 terabytes of our personal data flow into Facebook every day.

Even though he has pledged to give away 99% of his Facebook stock during the course of his life, he will retain control of its board. In a multiple-class company like Facebook, The board can’t fire the CEO. Just the opposite: The CEO can fire the board, which means he can do almost anything he wants. If he wants more income, he can make the company pay out bigger dividends even if that’s bad for the business. For the rest of his life, Zuckerberg will be able to bring Facebook’s incredible power to bear in achieving whatever ends he desires.

Originally published on Medium By Priyansh Rastogi on March 4, 2017.

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