Mark Zuckerberg in India
Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg will take half of his four month paternity leave allowanceGetty

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg will take two month's paternity leave following the birth of his daughter. The move, which sees the internet billionaire taking half of his four month allowance, signals a wider trend away from the work hard, play hard culture of tech companies that are shifting towards relaxing company rules.

In August, Netflix began offering unlimited paid maternity and paternity leave for its employees in what was widely regarded as an industry first. This was closely followed just a few months later by online retailer Amazon when it offered paid paternity leave to employees for the first time.
This week, Sweden-based music streaming service Spotify also offered staff up to six months' parental leave with 100% pay as part of a worldwide policy it said added to "a healthy work-family balance".

In a statement on his Facebook timeline Zuckerberg said that he and his wife Priscilla were getting ready for their daughter's arrival. "We've been picking out our favourite childhood books and toys," he said.

"We've also been thinking about how we're going to take time off during the first months of her life. This is a very personal decision, and I've decided to take two months of paternity leave when our daughter arrives. At Facebook we offer our US employees up to four months of paid maternity or paternity leave which they can take throughout the year."

Zuckerberg, who has not said who will take up his role in an interim capacity as chief executive of the social network in his absence, famously shuns the limelight preferring to lead a relatively normal life. Despite being worth an estimated $47.1bn (£31bn) in a recent survey by Forbes magazine he, and his wife have only just moved from a modest town house in Palo Alto California to a 5,000ft sq dwelling.