It’s hard to blame someone fleeing a burning building. The same can be applied to Silicon Valley, where thead of public relations at Meta, Fparent company acebooka, withdraws.
As he was the first to report Wall Street Journal, Global Communications Vice President John Pinette announced the news to employees on Friday after overseeing the company’s external communications since 2019. His departure comes as technology giant struggles with several PR fires, the most prominent among them outburst from “Facebook papers”, A series of damn reports first published by the Journal last fall, which included thousands of internal documents leaked.
“Today will be my last day in Meta,” Pinette wrote in a statement reviewed by the Journal. “I know the team will continue to thrive as you do some of the most important and difficult jobs in communications.”
Meta later confirmed his departure in a statement to several media outlets.
“John Pinette has left Met. We are grateful for his positive contribution during an intensive and significant period in the company’s history and wish him much success in his future work, “the company said in an e-mail to Gizmod on Saturday.
A spokesman for Meta said Reuters that Chris Norton, vice president of international communications, will take over the role in the meantime. Meta has so far not publicly commented on why Pinette left, citing the company’s policy of not commenting on personnel issues in a statement to Reuters.
Pinette joined the company in 2019 with more than two decades of valuable experience in corporate communications in the technology industry, including previous positions as director of Google’s pan-regional communications for Asia and communications manager at Microsoft.
In September, Frances Haugen, a former employee of Facebook’s now-defunct Civic Integrity Team, shared thousands of internal discussions, letters, research, presentations and other company documents with several news outlets in one of Silicon Valley’s biggest data leaks to date.
It is usually called Facebook papers, documents leaked, among other things, showed that researchers on Instagram extensively studied the link between children’s mental health and its products and were aware of how harmful the application could be, especially for teenage girls. In response, the U.S. Senate called on Facebook to testify at a hearing on the detrimental effects of Instagram on its younger users.
Amid significant political pressure, the company has given up on its previously announced plans to build an Instagram version specifically for children, although Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri later explained to lawmakers that he did not completely reject the idea. Other revelations from Facebook newspapers, including Facebook’s insufficient anti-proliferation policy climate misinformation and internal divisions around his handshake political advertisements, also provoked public scrutiny.