Don't fall for the hoax! Mark Zuckerberg isn't giving his fortune away to Facebook users

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg speaks during a conference in March 2015. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)

Sorry Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg isn't giving away millions of dollars to everyday users.

In the latest hoax going viral on people's newsfeeds, the Facebook founder is reportedly intending to dole out large amounts of his company stock "as a way of saying thank you for making Facebook such a powerful vehicle for connection." To be eligible to be among the 1,000 winners, the post says, you must copy and paste the text and post it as your own status.

A screenshot of the Facebook post people are sharing containing false claims about Mark Zuckerberg giving away his fortune.

As often happens with Internet rumors, the claim is tied to real-life events. Following the birth of their daughter, Zuckerberg and his wife, Dr. Priscilla Chan, pledged to gradually donate 99 percent of their Facebook shares to the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, aimed at tackling some of the world's biggest problems like disease, poverty and clean energy. The hoax began to surface soon after the announcement, according to Snopes, a website devoted to debunking (or verifying) Internet rumors.

Zuckerberg and Chan's very real donation amounts to $45 billion, the same amount mentioned in the hoax post. Zuckerberg's announcement did not say, however, that a portion would go to randomly selected Facebook users, as the hoax claims.

Not all Facebook users are falling for the hoax, however. Some people are poking fun at the false claim by expanding on the "promises" that Zuckerberg was making, including giving away a unicorn.

This is far from the first time a social media post containing false information has been widely shared. Twice this year, a Facebook post claiming to give users copyright protection to their social media content went viral. When Facebook released a statement to debunk that one, they wrote, "Don't believe everything you read on the internet."
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