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Q&A with Sheryl Sandberg : „We will never stop all the bad from happening“

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Sheryl Sandberg Bild: Bloomberg

Facebook is in the biggest crisis of its history. Sheryl Sandberg answered questions about the future of Facebook and herself.

          7 Min.

          Sheryl, Facebook is in the biggest crisis of its history. Will it survive?

          Yes. Without question, the last few years have been difficult for Facebook. We've acknowledged our mistakes – and we’re listening, learning, and making real progress.

          What kind of progress?

          We’ve taken aggressive steps, including investing heavily in safety and security, protecting against election interference, cracking down on misinformation, giving people more control over their data, and significantly increasing transparency about our policies and decisions. Without a doubt, we now have a fundamentally different approach to meeting these challenges – and we're not the same company we were in 2016, or even a year ago.

          Is that enough?

          We will never stop all the bad from happening, but we’re working more closely with governments, outside experts, and other tech companies to tackle bad actors. Speaking for Mark, myself and everyone at Facebook, we are more determined than ever to keep people safe on our services and make sure the good things people love about our apps can keep happening every day. 

          If there is one thing you personally would like to have done differently this past year at Facebook, what would it be?

          I, and everyone at Facebook, accept the deep responsibility we have to protect the people who use our services. We know we need to get better at anticipating all of the risks that come with connecting so many people. We need to be faster to stop abuse on our platforms. We need to do more to protect people’s information. There's still a lot of work ahead and we are far from finished. I go to work every day knowing that the actions we take affect people’s lives. Our mission is critical, and I’m committed to seeing it through with all of the great people in our company.

          Will you stay at Facebook’s helm?

          Yes, there's an important job to do.

          With the share-price being down more than 30 percent since July and the ongoing discussions around issues like privacy or data-sharing, other companies probably would have changed their senior leadership already – at least in parts. Don’t you think a new face is necessary to rebuild trust in the biggest social network of the world?

          We know we need to do much more to earn back people’s trust and we must demonstrate that with effective, ongoing action. Mark and I built this company together and feel a deep responsibility to address our challenges together head on. It won’t be easy and it will take time, but we're committed to doing what it takes. 

          Within the „Techlash” we have been experiencing for far more than a year now, no other company has been as heavily scrutinized as yours. Do you think Facebook is being disproportionately singled out for criticism?

          We’re a large platform that touches billions of people's lives. With that comes responsibility and intense scrutiny. We accept that and take our responsibility incredibly seriously.

          Why does Facebook in fact exist today?

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