Inside Facebook’s Push to Defend Its Image

The variations have involved Facebook executives from its promoting, communications, coverage and integrity teams. Alex Schultz, a 14-12 months enterprise veteran who was named chief marketing and advertising officer previous 12 months, has also been influential in the graphic reshaping energy, reported five persons who worked with him. But at least a person of the decisions was driven by Mr. Zuckerberg, and all had been accredited by him, 3 of the folks said.

Credit score…Tommaso Boddi/Getty Photographs

Joe Osborne, a Fb spokesman, denied that the organization experienced improved its tactic.

“People deserve to know the methods we’re getting to handle the different concerns going through our organization — and we’re likely to share individuals ways broadly,” he reported in a assertion.

For years, Facebook executives have chafed at how their corporation appeared to obtain a lot more scrutiny than Google and Twitter, reported present and former employees. They attributed that attention to Facebook’s leaving alone much more exposed with its apologies and supplying access to inside data, the people mentioned.

So in January, executives held a digital assembly and broached the concept of a a lot more intense protection, just one attendee reported. The team talked about working with the Information Feed to market beneficial news about the company, as nicely as jogging ads that connected to favorable content about Facebook. They also debated how to outline a professional-Facebook story, two contributors explained.

That exact same month, the communications staff mentioned means for executives to be significantly less conciliatory when responding to crises and resolved there would be much less apologizing, said two persons with information of the approach.

Mr. Zuckerberg, who had come to be intertwined with plan troubles which include the 2020 election, also desired to recast himself as an innovator, the folks stated. In January, the communications group circulated a doc with a tactic for distancing Mr. Zuckerberg from scandals, partly by focusing his Facebook posts and media appearances on new products, they stated.

The Facts, a tech information web page, beforehand described on the document.

The influence was rapid. On Jan. 11, Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s main working officer — and not Mr. Zuckerberg — instructed Reuters that the storming of the U.S. Capitol a week earlier experienced tiny to do with Fb. In July, when President Biden reported the social community was “killing people” by spreading Covid-19 misinformation, Dude Rosen, Facebook’s vice president for integrity, disputed the characterization in a web site publish and pointed out that the White Property experienced skipped its coronavirus vaccination aims.