Facebook’s Chief Product Officer and Head of WhatsApp Just Left the Company

Posted on March 14, 2019 by Mehedi Hassan in Social with 11 Comments

Last week, Facebook announced some major changes for its platform. The company announced it’s planning to shift its focus towards privacy and protecting users’ information, something it has failed to do in recent times.

And just more than a week later, two of its biggest executives are leaving the company.

Facebook today announced that it’s chief of product, Chris Cox and the head of WhatsApp Chris Daniels are leaving the company. Chris Cox was responsible for Facebook’s flagship apps — including WhatsApp, Instagram, and Facebook itself. Cox started off at Facebook as an engineer working on News Feed, but he later moved on to other parts of the company and became one of the biggest leaders at the company after Mark Zuckerberg.

Chris Cox leaving the company at such an important time is quite a big deal. With Facebook’s culture supposedly changing to focus on privacy, the company is already going through a ton of changes internally and with the head of product leaving at this time, things are going to be quite challenging.

It is also interesting to see the head of WhatsApp Chris Daniels leaving Facebook right now. Considering WhatsApp is a platform already focused on privacy and being one of the only Facebook apps to have end-to-end encryption at this time, it’s quite surprising to see Daniels leaving just a week after Facebook’s privacy-focused announcement. Daniels will be replaced by Will Cathcart as the head of WhatsApp, however. “He believes deeply in providing end-to-end encryption to everyone in the world across our services,” Mark Zuckerberg wrote in a blog post, welcoming Will Cathcart as the new head of WhatsApp.

Facebook is not appointing anyone to replace Chris Cox at this time. Instead, Fidji Simo will be appointed as the new head of the Facebook app. And Simo, along with the head of Instagram Adam Mosseri, head of Messenger Stan Chudnovsky, and head of WhatsApp Will Cathcart, will report directly to Zuckerberg.

“This is an important change as we begin the next chapter of our work building the privacy-focused social foundation for the future. I’m deeply grateful for everything Chris Cox and Chris Daniels have done here, and I’m looking forward to working with Will and Fidji in their new roles as well as everyone who will be critical to achieving this vision,” Zuckerberg wrote.

Once again, Facebook’s shift towards privacy is a big change at the company — both at a technical and cultural level. It’s a huge job for Zuckerberg and all the leaders of Facebook’s apps, so it’s not going to be an easy job for anyone involved.

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Comments (11)

11 responses to “Facebook’s Chief Product Officer and Head of WhatsApp Just Left the Company”

  1. james_wilson

    Facebook's business model is: We give you feeds / messaging / photo commenting / whatever for free. In return, we get access to all your data that we can do with as we wish. Privacy wise, we will ensure nobody else can get your data - except us. Once we have your data, we can do with it as we please / sell it to whomever etc.

  2. nazrul014

    Thanks for shear artical about Facebook

  3. Daekar

    Is it bad that I'm seriously enjoying watching Facebook flounder so much?

  4. Angusmatheson

    But seriously, how many times have we heard Facebook say they screwed up in the past, but now they are going to take privacy seriously. And they never do. It just isn’t their thing. It is like the story of the frog and the scorpion. We will all be delighted to see a Facebook that doesn’t leak people’s data everywhere, but I’m not holding my breath. We’ve done this same privacy drill too many times.

  5. cheetahdriver

    I think I am going to actually have to see some action here as opposed to announcements about privacy. Talk is cheap.

  6. hoomgar

    I'll believe it when I see it but I have to admit, it sounds good.  Here's to hoping...

  7. YouWereWarned

    End-to-end encryption? The Nazis will be thrilled...

  8. ferasfa

    Thank you, This will defiantly help me with my business.

  9. pecosbob04

    "And just more than a week later, two of its biggest executives are leaving the company."

    So just how big were these guys anyway?

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