Thursday, 30 June 2022 – 20:57

Nick Clegg’s Move To Facebook: A Tactical Manouvre

Sir Nick Clegg, former Deputy Prime minister in the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition, under David Cameron in 2010, has backed down from a life in the relative political foreground, for the vice-presidency of Facebook’s Global Affairs team.

Nick Clegg will start only a day after tomorrow, facing tough political investigations from all corners of the globe, after the Cambridge Analytica scandal, which saw many of Facebook’s executive’s leave the company.

Clegg will now be based in Facebook’s Headquarters in Menlo Park and is planning to move his family to their new home in California.

Sir Nick has been tarnished throughout the elections in 2010, during the coalition and now over his stance on Brexit, yet is still a relatively present figure in UK politics. Taking the decision to move across borders was not about his sense of nationalism, but his commitment to seeing a global society represented on an equal playing field.

Nick States,  “I thought I could do this academically, as a commentator, running a start-up, but then I thought, in for a penny, in for a pound.”

This comes as no real shock after being found to have had lengthy discussions with Mark Zuckerburg, CEO of Facebook, and Sheryl Sandberg, COO. Clegg wrote: “…I have been struck by their recognition that the company is on a journey which brings new responsibilities not only to the users of Facebook’s apps but to society at large. I hope I will be able to play a role in helping to navigate that journey.”

It is important to remember, Sir Nick Clegg is not the first Liberal Democrat to be employed by Facebook, Lord Allan of Hallam enjoys the role of Public Policy Cheif in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. 

What does this mean for the Liberal Democrats?

After a turbulent 8 years, the Liberal Democrats has seen their influence in Parliament depleted from 57 seats to 8. Nick Clegg himself lost his own seat, and only after this embarrassment, was knighted, Sir Nick Clegg.

The Lib Dems will now need to find a new leader, possibly an MP of more influence in local elections, and isn’t so mistrusted by the British public. 

Could this shake-up come just in time to rejuvenate the Liberal Democrat party?

Perhaps it is the disillusionment surrounding Brexit, combined with Sir Nick’s loss of influence in these debates that has led Nick to seek employment elsewhere. Engaging in the global political sphere where Nick Clegg is not so well known but has the expertise to become an influential actor.

“If the tech industry can work sensibly with governments, regulators, parliaments and civic society around the world, I believe we can enhance the benefits of technology while diminishing the often unintended downsides.”



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