March 2, 2005 – Bill Gates was knighted today by Queen Elizabeth, who conferred upon him the title of “Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire” in a ceremony at Buckinham Palace. Gates now joins the list of prominent individuals who are bestowed honorary knighthood.
Money can buy many of games of bridge, not to mention large tech companies, but it doesn’t buy the right as a non-Brit to use ‘Sir’ as a prefix to your name!
Non-U.K. ‘knights’ may not use the prefix ‘Sir’ before one’s name, at least not officially. Gates was selected for knighthood based upon “Microsoft’s impact on the British economy and the way it has transformed business practices.”
Ironically while Microsoft may have escaped unscathed from U.S. anti-trust proceedings, it seems unlikely to share the same outcome with the European Union’s proceedings.
Shouldn’t the actions of a monopolist merit the Tower of London rather than honorary knighthood?