Mark Zuckerberg’s Philanthropic Initiative Makes First Acquisition

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg Editorial credit: Frederic Legrand - COMEO / Shutterstock, Inc.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, paediatrician Priscilla Chan vowed to donate 99% of their earnings, worth billions of dollars, for philanthropic purposes. And it looks like they have kept their promise. The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative made its first acquisition by buying Meta, a website that helps medical researchers gain better access to documented research in their fields for academic purposes.

With the buying over of Meta, the Initiative will now improve on the services that allows for those in need of vital research material to be able to access it anywhere in the world. An algorithm, that is still in its early stages, will provide clients with topics related to their field of work based on relevancy. In a blog post on Monday, Cori Bargmann, the company’s president of science and Brian Pinkerton, president of technology, said that Meta will allow users to access research papers for free once the algorithm is worked upon and is firmly in place.

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The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative is not an NGO, meaning that it will be able to spend as much funds on improving its services, rather than depending on outside funding as well as limiting its expenditure to provide services of its choice. Meta initially raised $7.5 million from venture capitalists, but the acquisition by the Facebook CEO and his wife does not disclose how much money was put into Meta.

In a Facebook post, Bargmann and Pinkerton said: “Meta’s tools can dramatically accelerate scientific progress and move us closer to our goal: to support science and technology that will make it possible to cure, prevent or manage all diseases by the end of the century. Meta will help scientists learn from others’ discoveries in real time, find key papers that may have gone unnoticed, or even predict where their field is headed.”

If one recalls, at the birth of their daughter Max, the couple had posted a video to Facebook, saying that they would do whatever it took to help build a better world for their child and billions like her. A safer, disease-free and environmentally controlled world that helps make things better for everyone. Though Meta’s statement is a bold one, with the backing of the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, its goals may become more clearer and achievable in the short and long run.