Hey Everyone --

This is going to be an intense year for Facebook, and it's also going to be a big year for what we do with Facebook Connect and Platform. Our goal is to help people share information and connect with the people they know all over the Web. Our strategy is to become the most effective way for every developer or publisher to spread their site and create engagement. Right now there are already more than a thousand sites using Connect, and by the end of the year that number should approach the number of Platform applications.

In order to build on this momentum, we're making some changes and moving some of Facebook’s people into new roles.

Mike Vernal will be taking over as the new manager of the Connect and Platform engineering teams. Mike was critical in building and launching Connect and thinking through the new problems we're going to face as it grows. Charlie Cheever did an excellent job launching Platform and leading the team for the past year and a half, and now he's going to lead more new initiatives for us. Charlie will be moving into a new role as an engineering manager where he'll be fo cused on building some of our new products and ways for people to share information.

Ethan Beard will become the director of Platform Marketing, moving over from his current role in business development. Ethan has been one of the stars at Facebook for his work in many areas, most recently getting developers to adopt Connect. His background includes experience in product management as well as some engineering at his own company. I've asked Elliot Schrage, who was managing the team and leading our search for a new director, to take on other marketing responsibilities within the company.

Ruchi Sanghvi will remain the product manager for the Platform team. This isn't a change -- and she's doing a great job -- but I wanted to call out this role since product management is the third leg in the engineering-product management-product marketing team.

I'm excited about our Connect and Platform strategy for 2009 and these new leadership roles. As you have the chance to work with Ethan, Mike and Ruchi and see the results of their work, I’m sure you will be, too.

Mark