Facebook Seeking Friends in Beltway

President Barack Obama will travel to Facebook Inc.’s Silicon Valley headquarters Wednesday to hold a “town hall” meeting on the economy with users of the social-networking site.

But Facebook is still trying to find a path to Washington, where the company has only a fledgling lobbying operation, even though it finds its privacy policies under increasing scrutiny and is trying to navigate a politically sensitive expansion into China.

In seven years, Facebook has risen from a tiny start-up to an Internet power with a potential market value estimated at more than $50 billion. Now an online forum with more than 600 million users, Facebook faces growing pressure from lawmakers and regulators concerned about the way it uses personal information shared by its users.

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