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Facebook's PR head defended its anti-Soros effort, saying it was 'completely legitimate' (FB)

Facebook's PR head defended its anti-Soros effort, saying it was 'completely legitimate' (FB)
Reuters



Facebook's move to tie groups opposed to the company with billionaire investor George Soros was "completely legitimate," its top public-relations official said Wednesday.




Elliot Schrage characterized the move as in the interests of transparency and honesty in public debate.




Schrage didn't address the effort's echoes to longstanding anti-Semitic smears about Soros.



SAN FRANCISCO — Facebook's head of communications on Wednesday defended the company's decision to go after liberal financier George Soros, saying it was "completely legitimate."
The company's move to publicize Soros' ties to groups critical of Facebook represented an effort at transparency and honesty that's needed in public debate, said Elliot Schrage, the social-networking giant's outgoing vice president of communications and public policy, during a panel discussion at the Atlantic's Free Speech (Un)Limited conference here. Schrage didn't discuss the anti-Semitic overtones of the effort, which echoed longstanding far-right conspiracy theories that Soros is secretly funding a wide range of efforts to undermine American society.
"I think the principle that somebody who is a critic of yours, an investor who criticizes you in a public debate — if they're going to enter the public fray, I don't think it's at all illegitimate ... to transparently communicate about that," Schrage said.
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