Facebook’s Global Communications, Marketing and Public Policy Vice President, Elliot Schrage, has confirmed he is leaving the company. Schrage, who has been with Facebook since May, 2008, announced the intention to depart during a lengthy Facebook post. As part of the departure process, Schrage confirmed he will remain with Facebook and head up the search for his replacement, and following the transitional period will remain on as an adviser for “particular projects.” An aspect which Schrage states was requested by Facebook’s CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, and COO, Sheryl Sandberg.
While stating he is now ready for the next chapter in his life, Schrage also seemingly indicated how he does not plan to undertake a similar role elsewhere, in spite of previously moving to Facebook following a stint as Global Communications and Public Affairs Vice President, for Google. With Schrage explaining how heading up communications and policy for a tech company like Facebook is “intense and leaves little room for much else.” Interestingly, the post talks about the challenges in working at a company such as Facebook, and also the ‘sometimes controversial’ risks the company has had to take in the past to become the company that it is today.
Speaking of controversy, Facebook has endured a more turbulent and critical time of late due to the company having come under fire on more than one occasion in the past year. Some of the most noteworthy of these pressures have stemmed from the Cambridge Analytica scandal that highlighted the vulnerability of Facebook user data, and the accusation the company had not done enough to combat the spread and propagation of ‘fake news’ in the past. Since those criticisms first surfaced, the company has announced and started to implement a number of measures designed to mitigate against the impact of fake news and data collection in the future. Schrage, who has been in charge of the company’s communications and public policy during these issues, and the subsequent attempts to tackle them, did not specifically comment on those aspects, or whether they were in-part responsible for the decision to step down. Schrage’s departure follows on from Jan Koum who also announced he was leaving Facebook last month.