If Then

Facebook’s Former Security Chief Reflects on What Went Wrong

Alex Stamos on the NYT expose, Facebook’s political balancing act, and why Russia might be targeting the left.

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On today’s show, host Will Oremus will discuss the fallout from last week’s New York Times exposé, “Delay, Deny and Deflect: How Facebook’s Leaders Leaned Out in Crisis,” about Facebook with the company’s former security chief Alex Stamos.

Stamos has been at the center of this story both as a critic and an advocate. The story has revolved partly around reports that Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg stifled or downplayed his revelations that their platform was still not free from Russian meddling months after the 2016 election. We’ll get his side of the story, as well as his perspective on Facebook’s missteps, and what he thinks the public and the media get wrong about the company. We’ll also talk about what some solutions to its problems might look like, including, potentially, government regulations.


2:15 - Interview with Alex Stamos
37:53 - Don’t Close My Tabs

Stories discussed on the show:

The New York Times: Delay, Deny and Deflect: How Facebook’s Leaders Fought Through Crisis.

The Washington Post: Yes, Facebook Made Mistakes in 2016. But We Weren’t the Only Ones.

Slate: Facebook’s Response to the Damning New York Times Story Only Proved the Times’ Point

Facebook: A Blueprint for Content Governance and Enforcement

Don’t Close My Tabs:

Slate: Trapped in the Fire Zone

The New York Times: Are You Sitting Down? Standing Desks Are Overrated.

Podcast production by Max Jacobs

If Then plugs:

You can get updates about what’s coming up next by following us on Twitter @ifthenpod. You can follow Will @WillOremus and April @Aprilaser. If you have a question or comment, you can email us at ifthen@slate.com.

If Then is presented by Slate and Future Tense, a collaboration among Arizona State UniversityNew America, and Slate. Future Tense explores the ways emerging technologies affect society, policy, and culture. To read more, follow us on Twitter and sign up for our weekly newsletter.