Highlights

  • Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen testified before a Senate panel Tuesday
  • Senate calls Facebook 'morally bankrupt' compares it to 'Big Tobacco'
  • Facebook: Time for lawmakers to update regulation 

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EJ Explains| Big allegations against Facebook from hate to health, how allegedly profits came first

The former Facebook employee told lawmakers that Facebook consistently puts its own profits over users’ health and safety

Is Facebook the new 'Big Tobacco' of this era? Where a large corporation willingly pushes a product known to be harmful for a large section of society That is the accusation the social media platform faces from a former employee who has revealed shocking information that Facebook allegedly focused on profiteering even when it knew that it would hurt children health & democratic rights. Here is all you need to know-:

Also Watch: Facebook outage and concerns cost Mark Zuckerberg $20 billion dollars


First up, who is making the accusations?

Frances Haugen, 37, is a former product manager at Facebook who specialised in algorithmic product management. She joined Facebook in 2019 to work on civic integrity, including "issues related to democracy and misinformation.

Here are the big accusations against Facebook-

  • Company prioritized profit while stoking division, undermining democracy and harming the mental-health of its youngest users
  • Facebook repeatedly encountered conflicts between its own profits and consumers' safety
  • Facebook consistently puts its own profits over users’ health and safety
  • Algorithms’ design that steers users toward high-engagement posts that can be harmful.
  • Facebook’s internal research had found Instagram created a toxic environment for some teen girls already experiencing negative feelings about their bodies
  • 8 out of 10 teen Instagram users in the U.S. said the platform made them feel better or had no effect on their feelings about themselves.
  • Whistleblower: 20% teen girls that are remaining that are affected negatively is still significant on a platform boasting billions of users worldwide.
  • “The core of the issue is that no one can understand Facebook’s destructive choices better than Facebook, because only Facebook gets to look under the hood"
  • Statement to Senate by whistleblower: Mark has built an organization that is very metrics driven. and The metrics make the decision. The buck stops with him.

Facebook's response - 'we will not self police, update regulation'

After the hearing Andy Stone, a spokesman for Facebook, tweeted. We don’t agree with her characterization of the many issues she testified about. Despite all this, we agree on one thing; it’s time to begin to create standard rules for the internet. It’s been 25 years since the rules for the internet have updated, and instead of expecting the industry to make societal decisions that belong to legislators, it is time for Congress to act.

So, What next, will Zuckerberg face questions?

Senate hearing chairman called Facebook “morally bankrupt” and said it was premature to consider subpoenaing Zuckerberg, adding that he should appear before Congress voluntarily. “He has a public responsibility to answer these questions,” added the Senate hearing chief.

Also Watch: Facebook reveals reason behind FB, WhatsApp, Instagram outage

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