Looks like the original social network is shopping for a political network: Facebook has filed paperwork to form a political action committee and it plans to use it to funnel donations to its favored candidates in upcoming elections, reports the New York Times. As debates about privacy and monopoly concerns heat up, Facebook has already spent $550,000 on lobbying so far in fiscal 2011, up from $350,000 in 2010 and $200,000 the year before.
The Facebook PAC will "give our employees a way to make their voice heard in the political process by supporting candidates who share our goals of promoting the value of innovation to our economy while giving people the power to share and make the world more open and connected," a company spokesman says. Google chief Eric Schmidt was reaping the rewards of having such friends in high places at an antitrust hearing last week, the Hill notes: In lieu of grilling Schmidt, some Democrats on the panel instead heaped praise on Google for innovation. (Read more political action committees stories.)