The Internet’s most admired people are Bill Gates and Michelle Obama, survey finds

Michelle Obama beat actress Angelina Jolie to clinch the top spot, while Gates defended his title, which he has held for four years running.

Move over, Angelina Jolie. America’s former first lady, Michelle Obama, is now the Internet’s most-admired woman, while Microsoft founder Bill Gates has held on to his long-standing title of the most-admired man.

These titles were awarded according to an online ranking of the world’s 40 most-admired people, published by UK-based market research firm YouGov on Monday (July 22).

The annual survey polled 42,000 respondents across 41 countries, whose residents accounted for over two-thirds of the world’s total population, the firm said. It weighted each country’s scores to reflect worldwide sentiments, it added.

As the survey was done purely online, the results only represented the opinions of the world’s Internet population, YouGov said.

Countries it polled with an online population of lower than 60 per cent of the total population, included China, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Pakistan and South Africa.

The ranking showed that the world’s three most admired men were business magnate Bill Gates, former US President Barack Obama, and Chinese actor Jackie Chan.

Rounding out the top five were Chinese President Xi Jinping and Alibaba founder Jack Ma.

Read also: 17 surprising facts about Bill Gates


For women, lawyer and activist Michelle Obama beat former American actress Angelina Jolie to come in tops.

Jolie fell to third place, while talk show host Oprah Winfrey came in second.

In fourth and fifth place were Queen Elizabeth and “Harry Potter” star Emma Watson.

Read also: Michelle Obama reveals that Barack showed up late the first time he met her, and she was determined not to date him

In general, the men’s list featured politicians, businessmen and athletes, while the majority of the personalities on the women’s list were actresses.

YouGov said in a statement that Gates has topped the list every year since 2015, with the top five personalities in the men’s list unchanged from 2018.

For the men’s list, Portuguese footballer Cristiano Ronaldo and Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan rose three places each since last year, while Russian President Vladmir Putin fell four places.

Read also: Mahathir’s wife says she held hands with Khan and Putin because they treat her ‘like their mother’

On the women’s list, Obama and Winfrey climbed one place each, while Indian actress Aishwarya Rai fell five places down the ranking.

New entries on the rankings included Indian actors Shah Rukh Khan, Salman Khan and Sushmita Sen, talk show host Ellen DeGeneres, and the US’ current first lady, Melania Trump.

Also new to the list was Peng Liyuan, the wife of Chinese premier Xi Jinping, and Chinese scientist Tu Youyou, who won the Nobel prize for discovering a cure for malaria.

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