Facebook hires former deputy PM Sir Nick Clegg as head of global affairs: Report

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Facebook has hired former deputy prime minister Sir Nick Clegg as head of its global affairs and communications team.

The 51-year-old politician was leader of the Liberal Democrats and formed a coalition government with David Cameron and the Conservatives in 2010.

Facebook has faced intense scrutiny and the threat of government regulation following the Cambridge Analytica data scandal and alleged election meddling.

Sir Nick’s new job title will be vice-president of global affairs and communications at Facebook.

He will start work on Monday and will spend a week at the company’s Menlo Park headquarters, before moving to California with his family permanently in the new year.

Sir Nick told BBC media editor Amol Rajan he has been working on the frontier between technology and politics for the last few years.

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg were personally involved in the recruitment, the Financial Times reported.

 

In a statement, Sir Nick said he was delighted to join the company.

“Having spoken at length to Mark and Sheryl over the last few months, I have been struck by their recognition that the company is on a journey which brings new responsibilities not only to the users of Facebook’s apps but to society at large. I hope I will be able to play a role in helping to navigate that journey,” he wrote.

The former Lib Dem leader has expanded further on his reasons for joining the company in a Guardian article, stating that he remains “a stubborn optimist about the progressive potential to society of technological innovation”.

He added: “If the tech industry can work sensibly with governments, regulators, parliaments and civic society around the world, I believe we can enhance the benefits of technology while diminishing the often unintended downsides.”

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