Less than a year after Facebook (FB) CEO Mark Zuckerberg was criticized for the company’s botched IPO, he’s back in the hot seat again, this time for what some consider a political misstep.
FWD.us, the nonprofit group he founded along with other tech leaders like Google’s (GOOG) Eric Schmidt, Microsoft’s (MSFT) Bill Gates and LinkedIn’s (LNKD) Reid Hoffman to promote comprehensive immigration reform, has been running ads supporting the Keystone Pipeline, oil drilling in the Artic and opposing Obamacare.
The ads back Senators Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Mark Begich (D-AK) who are running for re-election as well as Marco Rubio (R-FL), who is not up for re-election but leading the effort for immigration reform. The ads appear to be a quid pro quo for something tech companies have been wanting for years: an increase in the the number of H-1B visas for high-skilled workers, primarily tech engineers.
In response to the FWD.us ads, progressive groups such as MoveOn.org, the Sierra Club, Daily Kos and Russ Feingold’s Progressives United have pulled ads from Facebook or have announced they won’t be placing future ads on the site.
Related: Is Facebook Losing Its Cool?
Michael Santoli, senior columnist at Yahoo! Finance, says this protest raises some issues for Zuckerberg though not necessarily monetary ones.
“It’s not so much that this is a big piece of their ad business," says Santoli. "It’s much more about a personal advocacy position that Zuckerberg has…but do you want to be heading those two efforts and have one impact the other?”
The Daily Ticker’s Aaron Task, says "Zuckerberg maybe still doesn’t understand what it means to be a publicly traded company.”
Perhaps Zuckerberg still has to grow into the job, notes The Daily Ticker's Aaron Task in the accompanying video. Although he's worth more than $13 billion and his company is valued at just over $65 billion, he turns just 29 next week.
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