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Posts Tagged ‘Elliot Schrage’

Gibbs Going to Facebook?

The NY Times’ Andrew Ross Sorkin hears that Facebook is talking with former White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs about a comms position that he would take in preparation for the social network’s 2012 IPO. Compensation for the job could be in the millions of dollars and Gibbs would report to Elliot Schrage, VP for global comms, who went to Facebook from Google in 2008. But, the story says, “the discussions could collapse.”

Just over a week ago, it was announced that The OutCast Agency co-founder Caryn Marooney was heading to Facebook to serve in a new position, director of tech communications. Politico says former Bill Clinton press secretary and Glover Park Group founder Joe Lockhart is also in the running for the Facebook job.

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Facebook Mum on Role in Revolts

Egypt celebrates after President Mubarak's resignation.

While the world has been talking up the impact that Facebook (and other social networks) have had on the revolutions in Egypt and Tunisia, Facebook is keeping quiet about their role.

The New York Times quotes this statement from Elliot Schrage, Facebook’s VP of global communications:  ”We’ve witnessed brave people of all ages coming together to effect a profound change in their country. Certainly, technology was a vital tool in their efforts but we believe their bravery and determination mattered most.”

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Just About Everything That Could Have Gone Wrong For Facebook’s PR Did; But Will It Affect Their User Base?

elliot schrage.jpg

Lets review. In response to the endless drumbeat about privacy concerns, The New York Times posted a Q&A with Facebook PR Chief Elliot Schrage [pictured], where he came off as condescending and arrogant — PC World called it, “the most egregious display of corporate doublespeak this side of Microsoft” — but also admitted to communications mistakes:

“It’s clear that despite our efforts, we are not doing a good enough job communicating the changes that we’re making. Even worse, our extensive efforts to provide users greater control over what and how they share appear to be too confusing for some of our more than 400 million users.”

The Times also posted a large info-graphic outlining the social network’s massively confusing privacy settings and noting that their privacy policy document is longer than the U.S. Constitution.

One blog posted a college era IM exchange from Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, in which he called Facebook users “dumb f*cks” for uploading their info to the site. Regardless of the context of the exchange, it forced the company to publicly respond.

Three New York University students created their own “private Facebook,” raised $100,000 so far to support it, and received a ton of press.

Also, a security hole with partner site Yelp, “would allow a malicious site to immediately harvest a Facebook user’s name, email, and data shared with ‘everyone’ on Facebook, with no action required on the user’s part…”

Their have also been new privacy complaints to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), which Facebook addressed by hiring former FTC Chairman Tim Muris.

Oh, and the government is still looking into the social network.

Meanwhile, some bloggers, PRNewser included, are offering up free PR advice to the company.

We can only imagine things are more than busy at Outcast Communications, Facebook’s PR agency of record, and that Facebook director of communications Brandee Barker is still glad she picked the perfect time to go on maternity leave.

However, our guess is that this won’t have a drastic affect on Facebook’s user base. Our latest PRNewser poll, albeit with a small sample size, shows that zero percent of PRNewser readers have deleted their Facebook account so far, although 58 percent of respondents said the social network’s privacy changes, “have definitely made me consider deleting my account.”

What’s your take? Take the poll, or leave your thoughts in the comments.