Facebook pushes back after co-founder calls for company's break-up

Facebook is pushing back after one of the company’s founders called for it to be broken up Thursday, saying it would be better for lawmakers to instead impose new rules on the social network.

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“Facebook accepts that with success comes accountability,” Nick Clegg, Facebook’s vice president of global affairs and communications, said in a statement on Thursday.

“But you don’t enforce accountability by calling for the breakup of a successful American company,” Clegg continued. “Accountability of tech companies can only be achieved through the painstaking introduction of new rules for the internet. That is exactly what Mark ZuckerbergMark Elliot ZuckerbergHillicon Valley: Regulators press Congress on privacy bill | Americans mimic Russian disinformation tactics ahead of 2020 | Ocasio-Cortez, Sanders back Uber strike | GOP senator targets ‘manipulative’ video games The Hill’s Morning Report – Lawmakers split over Mueller findings: ‘case closed’ vs. ‘cover-up’ Pressure builds for FTC to punish Zuckerberg MORE has called for. Indeed, he is meeting Government leaders this week to further that work.”

Clegg’s comments were in response to Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes, who published an op-ed in The New York Times saying the company has grown too big and powerful.

Zuckerberg is planning to meet with French President Emmanuel MacronEmmanuel Jean-Michel MacronHow center-leftists can stem the nationalist tide in Europe Tens of thousands march in Paris May Day protests Air Force secretary warns against European military force MORE on Friday and New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern next week.

Hughes’s column made waves Thursday for its blistering critique of Facebook and its CEO, Zuckerberg.

“We are a nation with a tradition of reining in monopolies, no matter how well intentioned the leaders of these companies may be. Mark’s power is unprecedented and un-American,” Hughes wrote. “It is time to break up Facebook.”

Hughes isn’t the first person who had a formative impact on the company in its early years to turn on it amid growing public scrutiny.

Roger McNamee, one of the company’s earliest investors, has also called for it to be broken up.

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