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The past several years have done wonders for Facebook's once-murky public reputation. After a series of privacy-related controversies and a rocky debut in the stock market, the company embraced and quickly came to dominate the time we spend on mobile devices. More than a billion of us use its apps every day, and they have come to serve as a vital connection between family and friends. As a result, Facebook's stock increased by a third last year, and revenue was up 40 percent in the last quarter. Flush with cash, the company has invested heavily in philanthropic efforts — both through internet.org, the company's controversial effort to connect the globe, and through CEO Mark Zuckerberg's personal charities, which are set to give away billions of dollars. All of which has given the company a newly articulated sense of mission, which it promotes aggressively in all its public communications: to make the world more open and connected. Fascinating to learn, then, that the company has been selectively disconnecting the world for hours at a time. In a fascinating report in The Information, reporter Amir Efrati details the various steps Facebook is taking to prepare for the possibility that Google one day removes its apps from the Play Store for competitive reasons. View the full article