The Senate Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety, and Data Security heard testimony Tuesday from Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen, a former employee of the tech giant. In a rare show of bipartisanship, a bloc of Republicans and Democrats joined together to demand action against the company.
Haugen, who used to work as a lead product manager for Facebook’s civic misinformation team, came before the Senate to discuss the company’s internal practices, with special emphasis placed on the ways that these practices disproportionately affect children.
Haugen explained, “I’m here today because I believe Facebook’s products harm children, stoke division, and weaken our democracy.”
She added, “I believe in the potential of Facebook, we can have social media we enjoy, that connects us without tearing apart our democracy, putting our children in danger, and sowing ethnic violence around the world. We can do better.”
Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) observed during his opening remarks that predatory targeting and marketing practices by Facebook have “put profits ahead of people.”
The whistleblower said that during her time at the company, she often saw the company faced with a choice between “its own profits and our safety.” When these conflicts arose, Haugen said, the company “consistently resolve[d] these conflicts in favor of its own profits.”
Yes, but so does Congress and Facebook will just pay them off under the table and they’ll get their hands slapped. They will pontificate and then let it slide like they do with anything.
I’m surprised that it even got this far with as illiterate as Congress is about technology. Zuckerberg toys with them when he has to testify while the suits in Washington grill them with questions prepared by their assistants, but don’t have a clue regarding what they are talking about.
This also is likely to be a sideshow while they push their infrastructure pork bill to create socialism through when we aren’t looking.
As you know if you look a few posts down, I loathe Facebook, but they act like they are above the law and certainly above congress, especially the group that is in there now. They are the biggest bunch of do nothings except cancel culture people and promote everything our country doesn’t stand for.
Expect nothing and you won’t be disappointed.