Leaning Out? Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg Abruptly Cancels Highly Anticipated TV Interview

It appears as though Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg is ignoring her own advice by “leaning out,” of a highly anticipated television interview with ABC News. 

New York Post reports:

After many significant days of silence, the Facebook COO was quizzed by “Today’s” Savannah Guthrie on Friday, followed by an interview with Fox News’ Dana Perino. Sandberg was next due for a sit-down on ABC’s Sunday show “This Week With George Stephanopoulos,” as she and CEO Mark Zuckerberg scramble to subdue the social- media scandal.

But, according to TV insiders, when “Lean In” author Sandberg learned she would be quizzed by trailblazing journalist Martha Raddatz, and not ABC News star Stephanopoulos, the Facebook doyenne demurred. […]

No-nonsense Raddatz, who has reported from Iraq and the White House for ABC, famously wasn’t lured by “Lean In,” saying at a 2014 forum that women should not feel pressure to “have it all.”

An ABC insider claimed to Emily Smith of the New York Post that, “Sheryl’s team were talking to producers at ‘This Week.’ After they were told the interview would be with Martha, not George, the discussions ended.”

“Sheryl has a good relationship with George, but the decision not to proceed appeared to be based largely on that Sheryl wouldn’t be sitting with the biggest name on the show . . . not that she anticipated George would give her a sympathetic interview,” the insider added.

Federal investigators have begun probing Facebook’s use of personal data after reports surfaced that Cambridge Analytica ‘improperly gained access to the data of more than 50 million users.’


CNBC reports:

“We are aware of the issues that have been raised but cannot comment on whether we are investigating. We take any allegations of violations of our consent decrees very seriously as we did in 2012 in a privacy case involving Google,” a spokesman for the FTC said Tuesday.

A violation of the consent decree could carry a penalty of $40,000 per violation, which could mean a fine conservatively estimated to be “many millions of dollars in fines” for Facebook, The Washington Post reported over the weekend, citing a former FTC official.

“We reject any suggestion of violation of the consent decree. We respected the privacy settings that people had in place. Privacy and data protections are fundamental to every decision we make,” the social network giant said in a statement to the Washington Post.

Zuckerberg is scheduled to testify before a joint Senate Judiciary and Commerce Committee hearing on April 10th and the House Energy and Commerce Committee on the following day.

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