Two top Facebook executives leave the company

Two top Facebook executives leave the company

Chris Cox, Facebook's VP of Product, and Chris Daniels, who has lead WhatsApp since the departure of founder Jan Koum, are both leaving the company. Zuckerberg wrote that Cox considered leaving years ago to pursue new projects, but he chose to stay in 2016, around the time Facebook began taking heat for acting as a conduit for misinformation and Russian election interference.

Facebook, which has been embroiled in a series of scandals, is losing two more top executives as it focuses on building a more "privacy-focused social platform". Chris Cox was responsible for Facebook's flagship apps - including WhatsApp, Instagram, and Facebook itself.

In his blog post, Zuckerberg said that Cox had told him that he planned to move on several years ago, but that Cox chose to hold off on leaving until the company made more progress combating misinformation and Russian meddling - controversies that erupted in the wake of the 2016 election.

While Cox gave no specific reason for his move, he noted that Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg has unveiled a new direction away from being the "digital town square" to focus on smaller-scale, private interactions.

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These apps have been distinct until recently, when Zuckerberg announced plans to unify them under a banner of/with a new focus on privacy. He also built Facebook's first human resources teams and oversaw the strategy for the apps that Facebook owns, Zuckerberg wrote.

Numerous changes Zuckerberg outlined involve duplicating some of WhatsApp's features in Facebook's other messaging apps.

Daniels has been at Facebook almost nine years, and previously led the company's Internet.org effort, a project aimed at bringing internet access to developing countries. Daniels will be replaced by Will Cathcart as the head of WhatsApp, however.

These two departures come on the heels of founding-executive departures at Facebook-owned Instagram and WhatsApp previous year. "Instead, the leaders of Facebook (Fidji Simo), Instagram (Adam Mosseri), Messenger (Stan Chudnovsky), and WhatsApp (Will Cathcart) will report directly to me, and our Chief Marketing Officer (Antonio Lucio) will report directly to Sheryl".

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