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Communications Services Shares Fall; Services Scramble to Remove Shooting Video -- Communications Services Roundup

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03/15/2019 | 04:48pm EDT

Shares of communication services companies slipped. Scenes of a mosque shooting in New Zealand on Friday were streamed live on Facebook and posted on YouTube and Twitter, in a gruesome example of how social media platforms still can be misused to spread terror despite heavy spending by their owners to contain such content. All three platforms scrambled to remove the 17-minute video that shows a gunman walking through a mosque and firing at worshipers who slumped to the floor. At least 49 people were killed in the attack. Separately, Facebook shares slid after a senior executive viewed as a potential successor to Mark Zuckerberg abruptly stepped down Thursday, signaling that he disagrees with the CEO's new focus on private messaging at the social-networking giant. Chris Cox, one of Facebook's early engineers and a close friend of Mr. Zuckerberg, said he decided to leave the company to enable new leadership to pull off the shift in direction. Ten months ago, Mr. Cox was promoted to oversee the company's three main platforms: Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp. WhatsApp unit head Chris Daniels also stepped down on Thursday.

-Amy Pessetto, amy.pessetto@dowjones.com

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