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Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

Nick Clegg has a herculean job ahead of him at Facebook as the incoming head of PR and global affairs. It's almost impossible to keep up with the sheer breadth of negative headlines about the company.

The big picture: Most urgently, Clegg has to grapple with a lawsuit close to many journalists' hearts. Facebook, by inflating the number of video views on its platform, precipitated innumerable "pivots to video" wherein people-who-write-things were laid off and video producers were hired (and then fired when the video views never materialized). Expect people-who-write-things (a superset of newsletter writers) to stay on this story like glue.

  • Politicians have greater clout than journalists, however, which means that the bigger problem for Clegg is a shareholder proposal to oust Zuckerberg as chairman of Facebook.
  • Rhode Island, Illinois, Pennsylvania, and New York City have all signed on to the proposal. They don't have the votes to push it through, but there's more to this proposal than counting votes. Part of Clegg's job is to keep important politicians happy, and it's clear what important politicians want, in this case.
  • Recent Silicon Valley history is littered with examples where vote-counting doesn't matter. Consider Elon Musk being ousted as chairman of Tesla, or Travis Kalanick's defenestration at Uber. Consider, even, the way in which Mark Zuckerberg dropped his plans to issue new non-voting shares, despite having the voting power to push the change through. Zuckerberg has enough votes to stay on as chairman. But that doesn't mean he's safe in the job.

The bottom line: Among Facebook’s biggest problems is that it lost a huge amount of public trust and credibility thanks to having been nefariously used in the election of Trump. Clegg, who lost credibility after entering into a coalition with David Cameron that allowed the U.K. Conservative party to attain power, may or may not be the perfect person to help Zuckerberg navigate the consequences.

  • Advice for Clegg from Axios CEO Jim VandeHei: Radically self-regulate, or allow government regulation. Maybe it takes a new FCC of social media to force the same standards as expected from TV stations and newspapers. One thing is for sure: The current self-policing isn't cutting it.

Go deeper

Updated 2 hours ago - World

HRW: Over 100 former Afghan security members dead or missing under Taliban rule

Members of the Taliban movement patrol Kabul's airport in September. Photo: Valery Sharifulin/TASS via Getty Images

The Taliban have "killed or forcibly disappeared" over 100 former members of Afghanistan's security forces since the group took power in August, a Human Rights Watch report published Tuesday found.

Why it matters: Former military members and officials from the ousted government, activists and other Taliban critics are facing peril amid executions driven by revenge — despite Taliban promises of an "amnesty" with no retributions, notes the New York Times, which first reported the news.

5 hours ago - World

Barbados becomes a republic, replacing U.K. queen with president

Combination images of Dame Sandra Mason, president of Barbados, and Britain's Prince Charles at her swearing-in ceremony in Bridgetown, Barbados, late Monday.

Barbados officially became a republic at midnight local time after Dame Sandra Mason was sworn in as the Caribbean nation's first president in a ceremony attended by the United Kingdom's Prince Charles.

Why it matters: Mason replaced Britain's Queen Elizabeth as head of state Tuesday — removing the country's final remaining colonial tie to the U.K. almost 400 years after the first British ships arrived in Barbados.

Right-wingers making McCarthy sweat for future Speaker post

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy stands with his Republican colleagues outside the House on Nov. 17. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Right-wing elements in the Republican Party are complicating House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy's attempts to become the next speaker of the House should the GOP take back the majority in 2022.

Why it matters: While McCarthy has worked carefully to build trust among the conservatives who tanked his chances at clinching the speakership in 2015, they're still circling ahead of the next Speaker vote in January 2023.