Here’s Facebook’s cowardly attempt to smear the whistleblower

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Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge Photo by Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

Facebook has chosen to respond to whistleblower Frances Haugen in the most cowardly way possible: by hiding Mark Zuckerberg, the man ultimately responsible for Facebook’s decisions, and beginning the process of trying to smear and discredit Haugen.

This is some Big Tobacco bullshit — precisely what sleazeball PR guru John Scanlon was hired to do when Jeffrey Wigand blew the whistle on tobacco company Brown and Williamson. Scanlon’s task was to change “the story of B&W to a narrative about Wigand’s personality.”

Of course, that strategy “backfired completely,” Vanity Fair reported in 2004. It probably won’t work here, either. One senator, Edward Markey of Massachusetts, has already called Haugen “a 21st-century American hero,” adding that…

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