Gizmodo writes that “It’s hard to blame someone for running away from a burning building. The same can be applied to Silicon Valley, where the head of public relations at Meta, Facebook’s parent company, is stepping down.”
His departure comes as the tech giant struggles to put out several PR fires, most notable among them the fallout from the “Facebook Papers,” a series of damning reports first published by the Journal last fall that included thousands of leaked internal documents.
“The central thesis of Haugen’s leaks is that that Facebook and its executives know about the problems Facebook helps ignite and proliferate, from political lies to eating disorders, and don’t do enough to stop them,” writes Insider.com. They add that whistleblower Haugen “has also taken aim at the company’s efforts to expand encryption to increase user privacy, suggesting such a move may make it easier for Facebook to ignore countries conducting espionage on its platforms.”
And they note that Facebook also lost its VP of Product Communications, Roberta Thomson.
The Wall Street Journal reports that the departure of communications head John Pinette is “creating a void at the top of the department managing the controversies surrounding the tech giant.”
John Pinette had overseen the company’s external communications since 2019. Prior to joining what was then Facebook, Pinette handled business and philanthropic dealings for deceased Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen. He also ran communications for Alphabet Inc.’s Google in Asia and advised Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates in past jobs.