Kara Swisher

Recent Posts by Kara Swisher

Facebook's Privacy Chief (And California Attorney General Candidate) Chris Kelly Speaks!


BoomTown tried to get Chris Kelly (pictured here) to give up more during an onstage interview I did with the Facebook chief privacy officer last night at the third “Tech Policy Summit” and was only moderately successful in the endeavor.

He talked about the recent Terms of Service debacle as a snafu that got sensationalized by the media, the Beacon advertising controversy as a snafu that got sensationalized by the media and the Free-the-Scoble-5,000 data-sharing debate as a snafu that got sensationalized by the media.

But Kelly also managed to say that the media were sensational for keeping Facebook–the dominant social-networking site in the whole wide world–honest as it grows into a behemoth grasping a scary amount of personal information on its 200 million users in its claws.

Oh, he is a smoothie all right, as a lawyer and now as a wannabe politician.

Kelly–who is still working at the start-up, where his job it is to make sure consumer data, privacy, the children and CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s reputation are all safe and sound–is also running for the job of California’s attorney general.

(Here is his Facebook page about the effort.)

Born in Silicon Valley, with a troika of diplomas from fancy schools (undergraduate from Georgetown in 1991, a master’s from Yale in 1992 and a law degree from Harvard in 1997), Kelly worked as a lawyer and also as a policy adviser for President Bill Clinton’s White House Domestic Policy Council and Department of Education before coming to Facebook four years ago.

For a closer look-see at the candidate for the Golden State’s top cop position, here’s a video interview I did with him after the onstage chat in San Mateo, Calif.:

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Nobody was excited about paying top dollar for a movie about WikiLeaks. A film about the origins of Pets.com would have done better.

— Gitesh Pandya of BoxOfficeGuru.com comments on the dreadful opening weekend box office numbers for “The Fifth Estate.”