Facebook is the premier social networking site – the numbers speak for themselves. But now that it’s firmly established as number one and a global phenomenon, the company wants to have more influence. And that’s why it’s begun hiring lobbyists in both Washington and Europe.
Facebook has just hired Richard Allan, who used to be head of European regulatory affairs for Cisco, according to the Guardian, to lead a European lobbying team. That follows the appointment of Timothy Sparapani, a former ACLU lawyer, as part of its Washington team. The irony is that Sparapani had formerly work on campaigns that criticized Facebook’s targeted ads.
Chris Kelly, Facebooks chief privacy officer, noted that it was important for governments to “understand our position,” due to the site’s size and influence:
"There is a concern we’ve had for some time that – in a well-meaning attempt to protect consumers – legislators or regulators would end up passing laws that would keep people from the beneficial sharing of information."
But Facebook, with its 200 million global users, is simply following in Google‘s large footsteps. That company’s Washington lobbying efforts have already proved to be very successful.
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