The Industry

Senator, They Told Mark Zuckerberg He Should Say “Senator” Before Every Statement

Mark Zuckerberg did not go to Washington unready: He wore a suit, he brought his notes, and, it’s safe to assume, he logged hours of prep time with his much-alluded-to “team” before taking his (platform-boosted) seat on the Hill. Somewhere along the line, that preparation must have included someone taking Zuckerberg aside and advising him to address each questioner by his or her title as much as humanly possible. Zuckerberg did as he was told, uttering the words “Congressman,” Congresswoman,” and “Senator” more than any 33-year-old has ever previously spoken them in a 26-hour span. If the intent was to show respect, the effect was more strange than anything else: Zuckerberg sounded like he was overdoing it, at times coming off as not just a try-hard but pedantic too. Sometimes even the best-laid strategies can backfire; senator, it’s complicated.

Read more from Slate on Cambridge Analytica.

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Heather Schwedel is a Slate staff writer.

Paroma Soni is a Slate video intern.