PV International Desk : On Jan 27, at a regularly scheduled Monday morning meeting with top executives at Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg turned the agenda to the coronavirus. For weeks, he told his staff, he had been hearing from global health care experts that the virus had the makings of a pandemic, and now Facebook needed to prepare for a worst-case scenario — one in which the company’s ability to combat misinformation, scammers and conspiracy theorists would be tested as never before.
To start, Zuckerberg said, the company should take some of the tools it had developed to fight 2020 election garbage and attempt to retool them for the pathogen. He asked executives in charge of every department to develop plans for responding to a global outbreak by the end of the week.
The meeting, described by two people who attended it, helped vault Facebook before other companies — and even some governments — in preparing for COVID-19. And it exemplified a change in how the 36-year-old is running the company he founded.
Since the day he coded the words “a Mark Zuckerberg production” onto every blue-and-white Facebook page, he has been the singular face of the social network. But to an extent not widely appreciated outside Silicon Valley, Zuckerberg has long been a kind of binary chief executive — extraordinarily involved in some aspects of the business, and virtually hands-off in areas that he finds less interesting.