To say that things have been going bad for Facebook would probably be a major understatement. The year 2018 has been quite disastrous for the social media major, having begun with the notorious Cambridge Analytica scandal. Facebook came under serious fire once news broke that Cambridge Analytica had inappropriately acquired private data of up to 87 million users and used it for political ends. The fiasco led to CEO Mark Zuckerberg getting summoned to Capitol Hill to testify before a Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation. However, after a report published earlier this month by The New York Times, the focus has shifted to Zuckerberg’s second-in-command – Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg.
In its report, The New York Times blasted Sandberg, linking her decisions to the social media company’s ongoing troubles. According to the report, the COO led an “aggressive lobbying campaign to combat Facebook’s critics, shift public anger toward rival companies and ward off damaging regulation. Facebook even employed a Republican opposition-research firm to discredit activists and protestors, partially by linking them to liberal financier George Soros. It also tapped its business relationships, lobbying a Jewish civil rights group to cast some criticism of the company as anti-Semitic.”
In view of all this, Sheryl Sandberg is now seen as the person most-directly responsible for Facebook’s woes.
“From now on, she is always going to be tainted,” a Facebook worker (who obviously asked not to be identified) was quoted as saying by a Bloomberg report.
It’s not exactly surprising that Sandberg is being held responsible for everything wrong going on at Facebook, since she heads critical operations like advertising. However, as COO, she’s also responsible for legal affairs and policy decisions at the social media company.
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“Most of the pressing problems fall under Sandberg’s responsibility. Placing the blame on Sandberg would be a convenient path forward for them,” said Bloomberg’s report, quoting Pivotal Research Group’s analyst Brian Wieser.