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In Private Meeting, Facebook Exec Warns News Outlets to Cooperate or End Up Dying in ‘Hospice’

In Private Meeting, Facebook Exec Warns News Outlets to Cooperate or End Up Dying in ‘Hospice’

“Anyone who does care about news needs to understand Facebook as a fundamental threat.”

Facebook admitted Wednesday that “most” of its 2 million users likely had their personal information collected by “malicious actors.” (Photo: Legal Loop)

During a closed-door and off-the-record meeting last week, top Facebook executive Campbell Brown reportedly warned news publishers that refusal to cooperate with the tech behemoth’s efforts to “revitalize journalism” will leave media outlets dying “like in a hospice.”

“We desperately need to develop alternative delivery mechanisms to Facebook.”
—Judd Legum, ThinkProgress

Reported first by The Australian under a headline which read “Work With Facebook or Die: Zuckerberg,” the social media giant has insisted the comments were taken out of context, even as five individuals who attended the four-hour meeting corroborated what Brown had stated.

“Mark doesn’t care about publishers but is giving me a lot of leeway and concessions to make these changes,” Brown reportedly said, referring to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. “We will help you revitalize journalism… in a few years the reverse looks like I’ll be holding hands with your dying business like in a hospice.”

As The Guardian reported on Monday, Facebook is “vehemently” denying the veracity of the comments as reported by The Australian, referring to its own transcript of the meeting. However, Facebook is refusing to release its transcript and tape of the gathering.


Facebook is saying these comments didn’t happen but The Australian has an explosive story on the company’s position with publishers. Five people at the meeting confirmed these comments and the company has tape of the conversation that it will not release.


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