Facebook stock slips

Facebook had a tough 2018, and it’s beginning to look like 2019 is going to be filled with its own challenges.

Following yesterday’s worldwide interruption which sent out Facebook’s stock plunging downward, news has come out that the business’s long-time product chief is stepping down, further weighing on the social media giant’s share price. Not only that, but its data deals are now under criminal investigation.

Chris Cox, 36, worked carefully with Zuckerberg through the business’s ups and downs, having enrolled about 20 months after Facebook was hatched in Zuckerberg’s Harvard dorm room in 2004.

Zuckerberg stated Cox initially discussed he may leave a couple of years back, but decided to remain on after 2016 as proof emerged that Russians had manipulated Facebook’s services to provoke discord in the U.S. and influence the election won by President Donald Trump.

In a parting letter, Zuckerberg noted, “I will always appreciate his deep empathy for the people using our services and the uplifting spirit he brings to everything he does.”

The departure, announced Thursday, follows Zuckerberg’s announcement that Facebook will shift its emphasis to private messaging over public sharing. The change reflects Facebook’s changing audience and continued problems with serving as a conduit for misinformation and vitriol.

Cox, 36, worked closely with Zuckerberg through the company’s ups and downs, having joined up about 20 months after Facebook was hatched in 2004 in Zuckerberg’s Harvard dorm room.

Cox “is a great guy who is someone who has always tried to do good,” said David Kirkpatrick, an author who became well acquainted with Cox and Zuckerberg while writing a book about Facebook. “My guess is there was some sort of disagreement. He would not be leaving at this challenging time if there wasn’t something else going on.”

Neither Cox nor Zuckerberg specified what led to their split.

Cox said in a post, “Most all my personal highs and lows of the last decade have been tied up in the journey of this company, with Mark, and with so many of you,” adding, “This place will forever be a part of me.”

Zuckerberg said Cox first mentioned he might leave a few years ago, but decided to stay on after 2016 as evidence emerged that Russians had manipulated Facebook’s services to provoke discord in the U.S. and influence the election won by President Donald Trump.

“I will always appreciate his deep empathy for the people using our services and the uplifting spirit he brings to everything he does.”

Similar to many other longtime Facebook executives, Cox is not likely to ever need to work again if he doesn’t want to. According to the company’s filings with securities regulator, he took $310 million in gains from exercising Facebook stock options from 2014 through 2017 alone.

The departure, revealed Thursday, follows Zuckerberg’s statement that Facebook will move its emphasis to private messaging over public sharing. The change reflects Facebook’s changing audience and continued problems with functioning as a channel for misinformation and trolling.

Facebook censorship

Over the previous year, Facebook (NASDAQ: FB) invited debate for supplying too much info to the wrong individuals. Not remarkably, Facebook stock struggled to gain significant traction in 2018.

Now, the organization may have a new problem on its hands. Just recently, a popular news site made waves in the media, accusing Facebook of baseless and arbitrary censorship.

ZeroHedge stated that Facebook Inc. has begun banning users from sharing links to posts published on the libertarian financial website, well-known for its bearish lean and anti-establishment criticism.

Readers of the blog reported being unable to share links to ZeroHedge articles via the social media platform, which has previously said it’s making a concerted effort to clamp down on phony news and damaging material amid increasing criticism. Zerohedge followers said some stories “couldn’t be shared, because this link goes against our Community Standards.”

On its website, ZeroHedge’s ‘Tyler Durden’ wrote that the blog was “surprised by this action as neither prior to this seemingly arbitrary act of censorship, nor since, were we contacted by Facebook with an explanation of what ‘community standard’ had been violated or what particular filter or article had triggered the blanket rejection of all Zero Hedge content.”

Zerohedge has confirmed that the ban has since been lifted.

 

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