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More Billionaires Pledge to Donate Wealth

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg talks about the new Facebook messaging service at an announcement in San Francisco, 15 Nov 2010

The billionaire founder of Facebook, and 16 other extremely wealthy individuals and families in the United States have agreed to give most of their fortunes to charity.

Mark Zuckerberg's social media empire is estimated to have earned him $6.9 billion. The 26-year old entrepreneur says some wealthy people wait until late in their lives to give back. He says it is a mistake to wait "when there is so much to be done."

The new donors have joined a charitable project called the "Giving Pledge" started by billionaires Warren Buffett and Bill Gates. The group now has 57 members and is looking for new recruits outside the United States.

The pledges come at a time when the economic crisis has increased the need for social services and decreased overall charitable donations.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.