5 months ago
Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s chief operating officer, called out Harvey Weinstein and the Weinstein company for his behavior after multiple women have come forward accusing him of sexual harassment and assault.
“The Harvey Weinstein thing is abysmal – and it’s not just his behavior, it’s the behavior of everyone around [him],” said Sandberg, according to Variety. She was speaking at an event held by news site Axios in Washington, D.C. on Thursday.
She said this should never happen, but since it has, “people should lose their jobs,” according to Variety. She continued by saying that every person should be afraid of going through what he’s going through so that they don’t do it. But then she reiterated that it just should not happen in the first place.
“And it just shouldn’t happen, full stop,” Sandberg said, according to Variety. “Should we be discouraged?… I think we need to be determined, because I think we can do better.”
Weinstein was fired from the Weinstein Company on Sunday after The New York Times released an investigative piece detailing three decades of sexual harassment and revealed settlements with at least eight women. Then, The New Yorker published a piece on Thursday in which several more women alleged Weinstein had harassed or assaulted them.
The New York Times piece wrote that the Weinstein Company was notified of payments to settle sexual harassment claims against Harvey Weinstein back in 2015. But the board had previously said it was unaware of these payments, according to Variety.
Sandberg was in D.C. meeting with congressional leaders on Wednesday in relation to Facebook’s role in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. The social media platform has identified about 3,000 ads purchased by an organization affiliated with the Russian government. The ads were seemingly designed to sway American voters, reports Variety.
Axios executive editor Mike Allen and Sandberg discussed the Russian ads issue for most of their 4o-minute conversation on Thursday. Sandberg said that Facebook is committed to free speech, and does not exactly fit the definition of a “media company,” writes Variety. According to Sanberg, Facebook is hiring additional staff so that there is more oversight of content and ads.
“We are a technology company in our heart, we hire engineers… but that doesn’t mean we don’t have a responsibility for what goes on our platform,” she said, according to Variety.”