Who are your four dream dinner party guests?
If the answer was Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, U.S. President Donald Trump and his wife Melania, and transhumanist and Trump donor Peter Thiel, then, unfortunately, you’ve already missed the boat.
The quartet met up for an intimate dinner at the White House last month, hours after Congress grilled the Facebook founder about the company’s plans to revolutionize global payment systems with its Libra cryptocurrency.
The dinner, first reported by NBC, was not disclosed at the time, but has now been confirmed by Facebook.
“As is normal for a CEO of a major U.S. company, Mark accepted an invitation to have dinner with the President and First Lady at the White House,” a Facebook spokesperson said in an emailed statement to VICE News.
Facebook did not respond to questions about what was discussed at the meeting or why the dinner was not disclosed at the time. The White House has also refused to comment on the meeting.
The meeting came a week after Zuckerberg spoke at Georgetown University, where he reiterated his company’s commitment to free speech and not imposing checks on misinformation in political ads — something the Trump campaign has taken full advantage of.
Trump and Zuckerberg appear to be building up quite a close relationship: the Facebook founder met the president in the Oval office just a month before the dinner, during another trip to the capital.
Thiel’s presence at the dinner was unsurprising, given he’s a Facebook board member and contributed heavily to Trump’s presidential campaign in 2016. Thiel is one of the few outspoken conservatives in Silicon Valley, and data-analysis company Palantir has also become one of the biggest recipients of defense contracts since Trump took office.
Cover: Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg speaks about "News Tab" at the Paley Center, Friday, Oct. 25, 2019 in New York. The new feature in the Facebook mobile app will display headlines — and nothing else — from the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, BuzzFeed News, Business Insider, NBC, USA Today and the Los Angeles Times, among others.(AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)