Friday, December 2, 2022

Facebook knows how to send off in style!

So much for Mark Zuckerberg’s emotional send-off post to Sheryl Sandberg, who quit after 14 years as Facebook COO. Zuckerberg called Sandberg’s leaving “the end of an era” and said she was a “great person, leader, collaborator, and friend.”

The Wall Street Journal says for the second time since Sandberg’s resignation that Facebook has been looking into her since the fall for allegedly misusing corporate resources.

Under review is whether she had Facebook employees work for her Lean In foundation, which promotes women’s leadership and workplace inclusion. She had them write and promote her second book. “Option B,” about getting over the death of her husband in 2015; and whether she diverted Facebook employees’ time and attention to her upcoming wedding.

What a demon

If “those familiar with the case” are trying to hurt her reputation, they are doing a hilariously bad job. (We asked Facebook for more info but haven’t heard back.)

Sheryl Sandberg is not an angel. If they did, they did it a long time ago. They looked at Facebook’s ambivalence about data protection and how it handled Facebook public relations after Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. She started a strong lobbying campaign to answer Facebook’s critics while Zuckerberg apologized.

You can’t help a rule-breaking company like Facebook become one of the most powerful in history without getting dirty. The second leak in April made people even more suspicious about Sandberg. The allegation is that Sandberg, who dated Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick, asked a U.K. tabloid twice to pull an article about Kotick by using Facebook and Activision staff and hiring outside counsel.

Many people worried that Sandberg might use her power in this way. The newer Sandberg articles are different. We hope that Sandberg and her friends will tell the truth about how they think she may have mishandled her assets. If so, that’s crazy.


Consider that Sandberg, a powerful woman and Facebook’s COO who is responsible for most of the company’s success, is being criticized for relying on staff to 1) start a women’s group, 2) publish a book for women about getting over the loss, and 3) plan a wedding after suffering a terrible loss.

If Facebook wants to complain about Sandberg’s wedding plans, that’s fine. Lean In and Sandberg’s books. Lean In’s revenues helped Facebook soften its brand.

We don’t think Sandberg wants Journal coverage. Facebook employees with grudges are more likely to. If that’s the case, their plans to get rid of Sandberg might backfire unless these internal probes lead to a much bigger leak.

Sandberg seems to be getting the worst possible send-off from Facebook. Where she worked longer than every other executive except for Zuckerberg. The Journal says that both Sandberg and Zuckerberg use company resources for things that have nothing to do with their jobs. The publication says Facebook “extensively discloses” these things in regulatory filings.

Slow disclosures make Facebook look small, vindictive, and foolish. Some at Meta were worried that Sandberg might get in trouble with the SEC if she used work resources for personal matters without making the right disclosures. This was reported by the WSJ.

Read more about: Meta will no longer make Portal for customers

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