Facebook’s lobbying tab in the second quarter was a healthy $1.06 million, according to disclosure forms filed with the U.S. Senate Sunday night. While strong, the second-quarter figures were off the blistering pace set by the social network in the first quarter of the year, $2.45 million, which put the company ahead of its Silicon Valley rivals.
The $1.06 million number reflects the lobbying activity of Facebook itself. The company continues to hire outside firms with contacts and expertise working with Democrats or Republicans in order to educate lawmakers about issues critical to the social network’s operations, such as immigration reform, privacy, and cybercrime.
The firms filed with the government on behalf of Facebook include lobbying powerhouse Patton Boggs, Peck Madigan Jones, Steptoe & Johnson, and Stewart Strategies and Solutions. Their combined total for lobbying on behalf of Facebook in the second quarter was $180,000.
The slight easing of lobbying activity is not that uncommon in the second quarter of the year. There is generally more activity in the first quarter, and companies start strong as new bills are introduced. For comparison, Facebook spent $960,000 in the same period a year ago, which reflects a more steady pace after tripling its lobbying expenditures between 2011 and 2012, when its Washington, D.C., office was just ramping up and legislation such as SOPA and PIPA (the Secure Online Information Privacy Act and the Protect Internet Property Act) were in front of lawmakers.
According to the report filed by Facebook, the company focused its efforts on cybersecurity policy, privacy, immigration, corporate-tax issues, and freedom of expression on the Internet.
Readers: Are there any other issues Facebook should focus its lobbying efforts on?
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