Facebook's chief product officer and head of Whatsapp are leaving

Facebook's chief product officer and head of Whatsapp are leaving

Facebook's chief product officer and head of Whatsapp are leaving

Facebook Inc's chief product officer and one of its earliest employees, Chris Cox, said on Thursday he is leaving the company, just days after Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg revealed a plan to pivot the world's biggest social network to an encryption-focused messaging company. These apps have been distinct until recently, when Zuckerberg announced plans to unify them under with a new focus on privacy. The change reflects Facebook's changing audience and continued problems with serving as a conduit for misinformation and vitriol.

Mark Zuckerberg has lost two of his closest lieutenants in a major setback for Facebook as it seeks to shift its strategy towards private messaging. "My guess is there was some sort of disagreement".

Zuckerberg said Cox first mentioned he might leave a few years ago, but made a decision to stay on after 2016 as evidence emerged that Russians had manipulated Facebook's services to provoke discord in the USA and influence the election won by President Donald Trump.

Like many other longtime Facebook executives, Cox is unlikely to ever have to work again if he doesn't want to.

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"Yesterday, we made a server configuration change that triggered a cascading series of issues", a Facebook spokesman told Barron's in an email message Thursday.

Chris Daniels, who heads messaging app WhatsApp, is also departing.

Zuckerberg, in a separate post, said Cox had discussed the possibility of moving on "for a few years", but had remained for a transition period.

Facebook isn't hiring another executive to replace Cox.

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Last May, Cox was put in charge of Facebook's "family of apps", including Instagram, Messenger, WhatsApp, and Facebook itself - which together have over 2.7 billion users worldwide.

Facebook has seen plenty of internal rearranging over the past couple of years, as executives have left the company or moved around it into new roles.

Daniels has been at Facebook almost nine years, and previously led the company's Internet.org effort, a project aimed at bringing internet access to developing countries.

Facebook's social network and Instagram photo app won't change, and will remain available for sharing places, adventures and minutiae with a broader audience.

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