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Facebook policy and comms head Elliot Schrage will step down after a decade

Elliot Schrage, the high-profile exec who heads Fb’s public coverage and communications efforts, is leaving the corporate after a decade on the social media massive, in step with an organization spokesperson.

Schrage, who joined Fb from Google the place he held a identical place working world communications and public affairs, will keep on on the social networking massive for a time to assist rent his alternative. He’ll then function an marketing consultant to Fb CEO Mark Zuckerberg and COO Sheryl Sandberg.

In his tenure at Fb — Schrage simply celebrated his 10-year “Faceversary“ in Would possibly — he has changed into one of the influential voices throughout the corporate, operating intently with most sensible executives like Sandberg and Zuckerberg, continuously touring with them on global journeys.

“After greater than a decade at Fb, I’ve determined it’s time to begin a brand new bankruptcy in my existence,“ Schrage mentioned in a observation to Recode. “Main coverage and communications for hyper enlargement era corporations is a pleasure — but it surely’s additionally intense and leaves little room for a lot else. Mark, Sheryl and I’ve been discussing this for some time.“

That is so, in step with many resources, who mentioned Schrage has been considering a departure for some time. Nonetheless, a spate of latest controversies across the mismanagement of the huge platform has weighed at the corporate and a few have justifiably criticized Fb’s gradual and overly wary reaction to the disaster. Schrage has been the purpose particular person on that reaction.

Maximum not too long ago, as an example, Schrage has been a key participant in coordinating Fb’s reaction to the corporate‘s Cambridge Analytica privateness scandal, which has integrated loads of apologizing by means of Zuckerberg and a promise from the corporate to “take a broader view of our accountability.” When Zuckerberg testified sooner than Congress in April, Schrage was once sitting within the listening to room.

Whilst Fb was once first of all gradual to reply to the scandal, it has since been relentless in pushing its messaging and making quite a few strikes to open up its platform and be extra clear concerning the massive quantity of knowledge it has accrued. Schrage has been pushing internally for Fb to be extra open with outsiders and got here up with the theory for Fb’s ”Laborious Questions” weblog collection. He has additionally been overseeing Fb’s not too long ago shaped unbiased elections fee.

Nonetheless, the breadth of Fb’s achieve and questions of the way a lot information it collects is still a large factor for the corporate and the way neatly it communicates that externally can be vital. A lot of media experiences proceed to concentrate on the way it stocks person knowledge with out of doors companions and the way neatly — or badly — it displays its platform. The impending midterm elections will a a large take a look at for Fb, too, particularly after the 2016 election during which trolls tied to the Russian executive used Fb‘s platform to take a look at and sway citizens.

Schrage’s departure is notable now not best as a result of he’s influential inside of Fb however as a result of most sensible executives rarely go away the corporate. Fb simply completed a big reorg for its product and engineering groups, however Schrage’s group was once additionally restructured. Longtime VP of Communications Caryn Marooney break up her activity working all of Fb’s communications, maintaining the product communications duties and giving company comms to Rachel Whetstone, some other former Googler and, extra not too long ago, head of comms at Uber.

Schrage will assist search for his personal alternative, and Fb plans to go looking externally to convey any individual in. Within the interim, Fb has Marooney and Whetstone working the communications group, and VP of International Public Coverage Joel Kaplan, who was once additionally within the congressional testimonies and by means of Zuckerberg’s aspect in Brussels remaining month, to run the coverage aspect.

Fb COO Sheryl Sandberg additionally shared a observation with Recode.

Elliot is among the maximum inventive and strategic folks I’ve labored with. He’s been instrumental in construction our coverage and communications groups in addition to pushing a lot of our key projects — together with the new e-newsletter of our group requirements, information about our effectiveness imposing the ones requirements and the introduction of an unbiased election fee. Mark and I stay up for his ongoing recommendation through the years forward.

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