Zuckerberg needs to step down and Sandberg needs to get the boot

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  • There is a huge failure in leadership and management at Facebook.
  • Business Insider said “the Times portrays Zuckerberg as, at best, uninterested in some of the existential issues that have threatened Facebook over the past three years and, at worst, even complicit in exacerbating them”.
  • Zuckerberg, and his right-hand woman, the chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg, were “distracted by personal projects” as Facebook was dragged into danger.
  • Advertisers need to distance themselves from Facebook NOW.

It’s time to start an alternative, nonprofit platform to replace Facebook …a new social media site that is managed with integrity, transparency, and the values that Facebook proclaimed but, clearly, never believed in or practiced. It seems that the only thing that was/is important to Facebook is money.

As one person said in response to a NY Times article “let’s hope more people and advertisers end their one-sided relationship with Facebook. If the last 30 months doesn’t prove their ineptness, their vapidness, nothing will”.

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The revelations may be “the straw that breaks the camel’s back,” said Rishad Tobaccowala, chief growth officer for the Publicis Groupe, one of the world’s biggest ad companies. “Now we know Facebook will do whatever it takes to make money. They have absolutely no morals.”

Almost all of Facebook’s revenue — which climbed to just over $40 billion last year — comes from advertisers, which range from local businesses to global brands. But marketing is built on trust between sellers and buyers, and the revelations this week are a jolt for some in the industry. The question now is will advertisers continue to use Facebook or will they hold Facebook accountable?

If Mr Zuckerberg believes that this is going to pass over he is sadly mistaken. I have already received calls from clients asking for alternatives to Facebook ads. It’s obvious that Mr Zuckerberg has no interest in managing the business so he should hire someone who can manage the business end while he continues to dive into the technical end.

On the other hand, Ms Sandberg has to go. She was supposed to be the grown-up in a room full of Millennial people with little business experience but she failed spectacularly. She instead decided to focus on her own personal brand by writing books and touring the country talking at events while the house was on fire. Now we are being told that the PR company that was hired by Facebook was not hired by Ms Sandbergerg but rather from Facebook’s Comm department. Excuse me, but isn’t that the responsibility of Ms Sandberg?

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Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s chief operating officer, has overseen an aggressive campaign to fight critics and ward off regulation. The buck stops with her and if Mr Zuckerberg was a leader, he would understand that she needs to go and that he is not the one who can lead a business.

Facebook is NOT a public bulletin board, it’s a media company and needs to take responsibility for that. Marketers to need to take a stand against a company that has no morals, has lied and has deceived.

Originally published at www.newmediaandmarketing.com on November 16, 2018.

Marketing contrarian with over 15 years of developing leading edge and award winning digital marketing initiatives.

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