A former Facebook executive says that the highest levels of leadership at the company have a “Game of Thrones” like culture.
In an interview with CNN’s Laurie Segall, ex-Facebook security chief Alex Stamos, explained how the inner workings of Silicon Valley’s social media giant reminded him of the HBO show which is famous for its political games and the backstabbing nature of the characters.
Stamos says that the top leaders at Facebook can be reluctant to admit fault owing to their long tenure in the company. “The truth is there is a bit of a Game of Thrones culture – among the executives,” he said.
“One of the problems about having a really tight-knit set of people making all these decisions … if you keep the – the same people in the same places, it’s just very difficult to admit you were wrong, right?”
Alex Stamos is a prominent figure in the security industry who served as Facebook’s chief security officer from 2015 to 2018.
During his time at the company, he reportedly had a clash with COO Sheryl Sandberg because he addressed the company board about Russian intelligence operations on the Facebook without notifying her in advance — which, effectively, blindsided her. After quitting the social media company, he now works as a professor at Stanford University.
However, Stamos believes that the root cause of this “Westerosi court” influence lies with Mark Zuckerberg as CEO. He further added that “Facebook wasn’t measuring the bigger impact and thinking about the ways people could twist it to be misused. And in the end, that is Mark’s responsibility.”