Regulating Facebook, Google will hurt internet: Zuckerberg mentor

Daniel Fowler
March 26, 2018

United States lawmakers on Friday formally asked Facebook Inc's Mark Zuckerberg to explain at a congressional hearing how 50 million users' data got into the hands of political consultancy Cambridge Analytica. For many users, "deleting Facebook" will also require creating new logins for their favorite services.

"Facebook and other companies and Google, they'll figure out a way around the regulations, but they are really not good for the internet as a whole", Wolf said. Ottawa is similarly musing about a possible new tax regime for the digital world.

As Nick Bilton put it, "from a business standpoint, Facebook's barbarism seemed to work out well for the company".

Thune and Nelson also noted that Facebook had not responded to a series of questions from the committee about the recent privacy scandal involving the data firm Cambridge Analytica. The overall Facebook family of companies is a sprawling web that touches billions of people's lives. A 13-per-cent stock plunge is a blip for a company whose value is based nearly entirely on data. The more you know them the more you trust them.

True friends spend time with one another because they love one another, not so that they can use each other. It followed reports from The New York Times and UK's The Observer newspaper (the Sunday edition of The Guardian) that Cambridge Analytica allegedly harvested the personal information of more than 50 million users.

And that's in spite of the fact that 84 per cent of that value hinges on something so elusive that it doesn't even appear in the company's books.

The ads say the social media platform doesn't deserve to hold personal information if it can't protect it.

On Friday, Facebook's senior managers promised an open line of communication as the company continued to re-evaluate its privacy and security measures, said two employees.

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These include things like carrying a reusable coffee cup and washing clothes at 30 degrees or lower. The occasion is to give a symbolic call for more action on the planet's climate change.

Facebook tracks whatever you do on the platform - photos, videos, comments, maps of where you've travelled, and all your "likes". The company uses a mixture of cookies, buttons and plugins on third-party websites to track non-users as they move around the web, letting businesses better target adverts at individuals.

Mozilla said in a statement that the steps outlined by Zuckerberg were positive, and that it would consider returning to Facebook when it "takes stronger action in how it shares customer data".

In Sunday's advertisement, Zuckerberg said Facebook will reminds users "which apps you've given access to your information so you can shut off the ones you don't want anymore".

"2018 is either the year of techlash, where the world turns on the tech giants - and we have seen some of this already - or the year of trust", he added.

But you can. It will just take some time. "We should have the same level of transparency required".

That app was called Facebook Poke and ended up being a huge flop but since then Facebook's Instagram has gone out of its way to copy Snapchat's popular features in an effort to squeeze its rival.

And that, apparently, is what investors are betting on.

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