The face of innocence. Just a real smart guy trying to do something great for society…. 2004
Just a few quick facts
Mark Zuckerberg EARLY ON
Zuckerberg attended the Johns Hopkins Centerfor Talented Youth summer camp when he was young.
Zuckerberg began using computers and writing software in middle school. His father taught him Atari BASIC Programming in the 1990s, and later hired software developer David Newman to tutor him privately.
During Zuckerberg’s high-school years, he worked under the company name Intelligent Media Group to build a music player called the Synapse Media Player.
On February 4, 2004, Zuckerberg launched Facebook from his Harvard dormitory room… He actually dropped out of Harvard.
LOOK AT HIM NOW!
Mark Zuckerberg Net Worth and Income Source
Facebook is Mark Zuckerberg’s primary income source.
REAL TIME NET WORTH
$67.3B as of 3/11/22
One year later after he left Harvard this quy was being interviewed and speaking at the STANFORD CENTER FOR PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT
HERE is the transcript :
TRANSCRIPTION OF INTERVIEW WITH MARK ZUCKERBERG GIVEN BY JAMES W. BREYER AT THE ENTREPRENEURIAL THOUGHT LEADERS SEMINARS, STANFORD CENTER FOR PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT, MS&E 472, AUTUMN QUARTER 2005.
Over half of online recruitment in active sex trafficking cases last year occurred on Facebook, report says
BY ELIZABETH ELKIND
From: JUNE 10, 2021 / 10:57 AM / CBS NEWS
The majority of online recruitment in active sex trafficking cases in the U.S. last year took place on Facebook, according to the Human Trafficking Institute’s 2020 Federal Human Trafficking Report.
“The internet has become the dominant tool that traffickers use to recruit victims, and they often recruit them on a number of very common social networking websites,” Human Trafficking Institute CEO Victor Boutros said on CBSN Wednesday. “Facebook overwhelmingly is used by traffickers to recruit victims in active sex trafficking cases.”
Active cases include those in which defendants were charged in 2020, as well as those in which defendants were charged in previous years and charges were still pending in trial last year or the case was on appeal.
Data from the last two decades included in the human trafficking report showed that 30% of all victims identified in federal sex trafficking cases since 2000 were recruited online.
In 2020 in the U.S., 59% of online recruitment of identified victims in active cases took place on Facebook alone. The report also states that 65% of identified child sex trafficking victims recruited on social media were recruited through Facebook.
The tech giant responded to the report’s findings in a statement to CBS News: “Sex trafficking and child exploitation are abhorrent and we don’t allow them on Facebook. We have policies and technology to prevent these types of abuses and take down any content that violates our rules.”
“We also work with safety groups, anti-trafficking organizations and other technology companies to address this and we report all apparent instances of child sexual exploitation to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children,” the statement said.
Instagram and Snapchat were the most frequently cited platforms after Facebook for recruiting child victims in 2020. For adult victims, the next-most cited were WeChat and Instagram.
The annual report uses data from every active federal criminal and civil human trafficking case over the last year, but 2020’s featured an expanded scope.
“This report actually looks at the last 20 years of trends in the federal government,” Boutros said.
The report revealed that children accounted for 53% of identified victims in active criminal human trafficking cases in 2020, and women made up a large majority. Forty-four percent of victims of sex trafficking were women, and half were girls.
While the internet has been the most common place of recruitment since 2013, including 41% of active cases in 2020, the street, stores and cults were also cited by the group as targets of human traffickers.
Researchers note that trends also reflect the DOJ’s methods of tracking down cases.
“These data do not reflect the prevalence of online solicitation in sex trafficking schemes beyond those federally prosecuted. To be sure, the internet is implicated in many sex trafficking situations, but the high numbers of federal prosecutions involving internet solicitation are equally if not more reflective of the strategies law enforcement use to investigate these crimes,” the report states.
The majority of victims in active sex trafficking cases in 2020 were targeted with a fraudulent job offer, the report notes, followed by feigned romance. The data is based on the 602 victims identified in active sex trafficking cases for whom details of their recruitment were known.
“Traffickers often prey on existing vulnerabilities of victims,” Boutros said. “A lot of times we imagine that traffickers are these large group syndicates or networks, exploiting a huge number of victims. But actually most traffickers are not operating as an organized crime enterprise. It is mostly individual traffickers that are operating individually and often exploiting a small handful of victims at a time.”
Editor’s Note: This story has been updated to correct a statistic on child victims.
The media has spent the past few days fawning over the Facebook “whistleblower” Frances Haugen, whom they have portrayed as someone who is a sole actor trying to take down the major corporations that run social media. Unfortunately for Haugen, however, her true agenda has just been exposed.
“This woman is an op,” our very own Stew Peters said of Haugen on his show today. “She’s part of a coordinated effort with the press, with Democrats, and with people inside Facebook itself to make the company commit more censorship.”
“That’s always what the left wants when they make claims about bias, or something threatening ‘democracy’ or ‘free speech,’” he added. “To the left, ‘democracy’ just means Chairman Biden getting his way, and ‘free speech’ means the freedom to recite left-wing platitudes.”
To further expose the agenda of Haugen and the Democrat power players who are backing her, Peters sat down with free speech advocate Jason Fyk, who is currently making a legal challenge to Section 230. Since this is the law that the left currently uses to enable mass censorship online, Fyk has a thing or two to say about Haugen and her agenda.
Fyk first became suspicious of Haugen when he saw just how much the media was pushing her story to the public. The media had virtually ignored countless other Facebook whistleblowers, so why would they give Haugen so much attention right off the bat?
Facebook Liable for Human Trafficking Connections: Court Ruling
By Andrea Cipriano | June 28, 2021
Photo by Kayla Kern via Flickr.
The Texas State Supreme Court has ruled that Facebook cannot be considered a “lawless no-man’s land” and must be held liable for the conduct of individuals who use its communicative technology to recruit and prey, the Houston Chronicle reports.
The ruling follows a trio of Houston civil action lawsuits involving teenage trafficking survivors who detail meeting their abusive pimps through Facebook messenger. The survivors further argued that the California-based social media company was negligent, saying Facebook “failed to warn about or attempt to prevent sex trafficking from taking place on its internet platforms.”
The survivors also allege that Facebook itself benefited from the sexual exploitation of trafficking victims, the Houston Chronicle details.
In 1947, Albert Einstein, writing in this magazine, proposed the creation of a single world government to protect humanity from the threat of the atomic bomb. His utopian idea did not take hold, quite obviously, but today, another visionary is building the simulacrum of a cosmocracy.
Mark Zuckerberg, unlike Einstein, did not dream up Facebook out of a sense of moral duty, or a zeal for world peace. This summer, the population of Zuckerberg’s supranational regime reached 2.9 billion monthly active users, more humans than live in the world’s two most populous nations—China and India—combined.
To Zuckerberg, Facebook’s founder and CEO, they are citizens of Facebookland. Long ago he conspicuously started calling them “people” instead of “users,” but they are still cogs in an immense social matrix, fleshy morsels of data to satisfy the advertisers that poured $54 billion into Facebook in the first half of 2021 alone—a sum that surpasses the gross domestic products of most nations on Earth.
GDP makes for a telling comparison, not just because it gestures at Facebook’s extraordinary power, but because it helps us see Facebook for what it really is. Facebook is not merely a website, or a platform, or a publisher, or a social network, or an online directory, or a corporation, or a utility. It is all of these things. But Facebook is also, effectively, a hostile foreign power.
This is plain to see in its single-minded focus on its own expansion; its immunity to any sense of civic obligation; its record of facilitating the undermining of elections; its antipathy toward the free press; its rulers’ callousness and hubris; and its indifference to the endurance of American democracy.
Some of Facebook’s most vocal critics push for antitrust regulation, the unwinding of its acquisitions, anything that might slow its snowballing power. But if you think about Facebook as a nation-state—an entity engaged in a cold war with the United States and other democracies—you’ll see that it requires a civil-defense strategy as much as regulation from the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Hillary Clinton told me last year that she’d always caught a whiff of authoritarianism from Zuckerberg. “I feel like you’re negotiating with a foreign power sometimes,” she said. “He’s immensely powerful.” One of his early mantras at Facebook, according to Sheera Frenkel and Cecilia Kang in their book, An Ugly Truth: Inside Facebook’s Battle for Domination, was “company over country.” When that company has all the power of a country itself, the line takes on a darker meaning.
The basic components of nationhood go something like this: You need land, currency, a philosophy of governance, and people.
When you’re an imperialist in the metaverse, you need not worry so much about physical acreage—though Zuckerberg does own 1,300 acres of Kauai, one of the less populated Hawaiian islands. As for the rest of the items on the list, Facebook has them all.
Facebook is developing its own money, a blockchain-based payment system known as Diem (formerly Libra) that financial regulators and banks have feared could throw off the global economy and decimate the dollar.Facebook requires a civil-defense strategy as much as regulation from the Securities and Exchange Commission.
And for years Zuckerberg has talked about his principles of governance for the empire he built: “Connectivity is a human right”; “Voting is voice”; “Political ads are an important part of voice”; “The great arc of human history bends towards people coming together in ever greater numbers.” He’s extended those ideas outward in a new kind of colonialism—with Facebook effectively annexing territories where large numbers of people weren’t yet online. Its controversial program Free Basics, which offered people free internet access as long as Facebook was their portal to the web, was hawked as a way to help connect people. But its true purpose was to make Facebook the de facto internet experience in countries all over the world.
What Facebook possesses most of all, of course, is people—a gigantic population of individuals who choose to live under Zuckerberg’s rule. In his writings on nationalism, the political scientist and historian Benedict Anderson suggested that nations are defined not by their borders but by imagination. The nation is ultimately imaginary because its citizens “will never know most of their fellow-members, meet them, or even hear of them, yet in the minds of each lives the image of their communion.” Communities, therefore, are distinguished most of all “by the style in which they are imagined.”
Zuckerberg has always tried to get Facebook users to imagine themselves as part of a democracy. That’s why he tilts toward the language of governance more than of corporate fiat. In February 2009, Facebook revised its terms of service so that users couldn’t delete their data even if they quit the site. Rage against Facebook’s surveillance state was swift and loud, and Zuckerberg begrudgingly reversed the decision, saying it had all been a misunderstanding. At the same time, he introduced in a blog post the concept of a Facebook Bill of Rights and Responsibilities, inviting people to share their feedback—but only if they signed up for a Facebook account.
“More than 175 million people use Facebook,” he wrote. “If it were a country, it would be the sixth most populated country in the world. Our terms aren’t just a document that protect our rights; it’s the governing document for how the service is used by everyone across the world.”
In 2017, in a winding manifesto about his “global community,” Zuckerberg put it this way: “Overall, it is important that the governance of our community scales with the complexity and demands of its people. We are committed to always doing better, even if that involves building a worldwide voting system to give you more voice and control.” Of course, as in any business, the only votes that matter to Facebook are those of its shareholders. Yet Facebook feels the need to cloak its profit-seeking behavior in false pretenses about the very democratic values it threatens.
Pretending to outsource his most consequential decisions to empty imitations of democratic bodies has become a useful mechanism for Zuckerberg to avoid accountability. He controls about 58 percent of voting shares at the company, but in 2018 Facebook announced the creation of a sort of judiciary branchknown, in Orwellian fashion, as the Oversight Board. The board makes difficult calls on thorny issues having to do with content moderation. In May it handed down the decision to uphold Facebook’s suspension of Donald Trump. Facebook says that the board’s members are independent, but it hires and pays them.
Now, according to The New York Times, Facebook is considering forming a kind of legislative body, a commission that could make decisions on elections-related matters—political bias, political advertising, foreign interference. This would further divert scrutiny from Facebook leadership.
All of these arrangements have the feel of a Potemkin justice system, one that reveals Facebook for what it really is: a foreign state, populated by people without sovereignty, ruled by a leader with absolute power.
Facebook’s defenders like to argue that it’s naive to suggest that Facebook’s power is harmful. Social networks are here, they insist, and they’re not going anywhere. Deal with it. They’re right that no one should wish to return to the information ecosystems of the 1980s, or 1940s, or 1880s. The democratization of publishing is miraculous; I still believe that the triple revolution of the internet, smartphones, and social media is a net good for society. But that’s true only if we insist on platforms that are in the public’s best interest. Facebook is not.
Facebook is a lie-disseminating instrument of civilizational collapse. It is designed for blunt-force emotional reaction, reducing human interaction to the clicking of buttons. The algorithm guides users inexorably toward less nuanced, more extreme material, because that’s what most efficiently elicits a reaction. Users are implicitly trained to seek reactions to what they post, which perpetuates the cycle. Facebook executives have tolerated the promotion on their platform of propaganda, terrorist recruitment, and genocide. They point to democratic virtues like free speech to defend themselves, while dismantling democracy itself.The freedom to destroy yourself is one thing. The freedom to destroy democratic society is quite another.
These hypocrisies are by now as well established as Zuckerberg’s reputation for ruthlessness. Facebook has conducted psychological experiments on its users without their consent. It built a secret tiered system to exempt its most famous users from certain content-moderation rules and suppressed internal research into Instagram’s devastating effects on teenage mental health. It has tracked individuals across the web, creating shadow profiles of people who have never registered for Facebook so it can trace their contacts. It swears to fight disinformation and misinformation, while misleading researchers who study these phenomena and diluting the reach of quality news on its platforms.
Even Facebook loyalists concede that it’s a place for garbage, for hyperbole, for mendacity—but argue that people should be free to manage their intake of such toxins. “While Facebook may not be nicotine I think it is probably like sugar,” the longtime Facebook executive Andrew “Boz” Bosworth wrote in a 2019 memo. “Like all things it benefits from moderation … If I want to eat sugar and die an early death that is a valid position.”
What Bosworth failed to say is that Facebook doesn’t just have the capacity to poison the individual; it’s poisoning the world. When 2.9 billion people are involved, what’s needed is moderation in scale, not moderation in personal intake. The freedom to destroy yourself is one thing. The freedom to destroy democratic society is quite another.
Facebook sold itself to the masses by promising to be an outlet for free expression, for connection, and for community. In fact, it is a weapon against the open web, against self-actualization, and against democracy. All of this so Facebook could dangle your data in front of advertisers.
To one degree or another, this is something Facebook has in common with its subsidiary Instagram and its rivals Google, YouTube (which Google owns), and Amazon. All position their existence as somehow noble—their purpose is, variously, to help people share their life, to provide answers to the most difficult questions, and to deliver what you need when you need it. But of the behemoths, Facebook is most ostentatious in its moral abdications.
Facebook needs its users to keep on believing that its dominance is a given, to ignore what it is doing to humanity and use its services anyway. Anyone who seeks to protect individual freedom and democratic governance should be bothered by this acceptance of the status quo.
Regulators have their sights set on Facebook for good reason, but the threat the company poses to Americans is about much more than its monopoly on emerging technology. Facebook’s rise is part of a larger autocratic movement, one that’s eroding democracy worldwide as authoritarian leaders set a new tone for global governance. Consider how Facebook portrays itself as a counterbalance to a superpower like China. Company executives have warned that attempts to interfere with Facebook’s untrammeled growth—through regulating the currency it is developing, for example—would be a gift to China, which wants its own cryptocurrency to be dominant. In other words, Facebook is competing with China the way a nation would.
Perhaps Americans have become so cynical that they have given up on defending their freedom from surveillance, manipulation, and exploitation. But if Russia or China were taking the exact same actions to undermine democracy, Americans would surely feel differently. Seeing Facebook as a hostile foreign power could force people to acknowledge what they’re participating in, and what they’re giving up, when they log in. In the end it doesn’t really matter what Facebook is; it matters what Facebook is doing.
What could we do in return? “Socially responsible” companies could boycott Facebook, starving it of ad revenue in the same way that trade sanctions deprive autocracies of foreign exchange. In the past, however, boycotts by major corporations like Coca-Cola and CVS have barely made a ripple. Maybe rank-and-file Facebook employees could lobby for reform, but nothing short of mass walkouts, of the sort that would make the continued operation of Facebook impossible, would be likely to have much effect. And that would require extraordinary courage and collective action.
Facebook users are the group with the most power to demand change. Facebook would be nothing without their attention. American citizens, and those of other democracies, might shun Facebook and Instagram, not merely as a lifestyle choice, but as a matter of civic duty.
Could enough people come together to bring down the empire? Probably not. Even if Facebook lost 1 billion users, it would have another 2 billion left. But we need to recognize the danger we’re in. We need to shake the notion that Facebook is a normal company, or that its hegemony is inevitable.
Perhaps someday the world will congregate as one, in peace, as Einstein dreamed, indivisible by the forces that have launched wars and collapsed civilizations since antiquity. But if that happens, if we can save ourselves, it certainly won’t be because of Facebook. It will be in spite of it.
This article appears in the November 2021print edition with the headline “Facebookland.” When you buy a book using a link on this page, we receive a commission. Thank you for supporting The Atlantic.
Published Mon, Mar 11 2013 10:46 PM CDTUpdated Tue, Nov 3 2020 12:24 PM CST
Even though this was a whie ago, I wanted to share it with you because it just shows that Facebook has known about the Human Trafficking problem on their platform a very long time! Still nobody has done a thing to stop it! It is simply ignored!
Facebook is used for a million and one things these days, but child trafficking – you’d think not. Misty VanHorn, a mother of two in Oklahoma has tried to sell her two children on Facebook. She was arrested on the weekend for alleged trafficking of minors on Facebook, trying to sell her 10-month-old and 2-year-old for $4000.
VanHorn reportedly offered the kids up for sale more than once, offering her innocent 10-month-old girl for $1000. Alternatively, you could buy a package deal which included both kids for $4000, where she actually had someone interested. VanHorn was dealing with a woman in Fort Smith, Ark., according to The Oklahoman. Because she was dealing across the state line from her home in Sallisaw, she might be charged with a federal crime.
Her Facebook message to the Fort Smith-based woman said: Just come to Sallisaw, it’s only 30 minutes away and I’ll give you all of her stuff and let y’all have her forever for $1,000. Why was VanHorn trying to sell her children? She wanted the $1000 to bail her boyfriend out of jail, where ironically she’s being held on a $40,000 bail. Her kids are now in the custody of the state’s department of human services, who alerted the police in the first place.
Selling people on Facebook. Just thought I’d repeat that.
The Wall Street Journal is now reporting that it has seen documents that said a Facebook investigation team was tracking down a human trafficking market in the Middle East, where they were using Facebook to sell people.The groups were advertising domestic workers through employment agencies, but they were supplying human beings against their will… on Facebook.
At the time, Apple threatened — but obviously didn’t in the end — to pull Facebook from its App Store. An internal memo describes that Facebook knew about the human trafficking epidemic on its service all the way back before 2019. There was a question on the report that the Facebook researcher wrote, asking: “was this issue known to Facebook before BBC inquiry and Apple escalation?“
The answer: “Yes. Throughout 2018 and H1 2019 we conducted the global Understanding Exercise in order to fully understand how domestic servitude manifests no our platform across its entire life cycle: recruitment, facilitation, and exploitation“.
The Wall Street Journal has no comment from Apple and Facebook of course, but remember that Apple cares deeply about this type of stuff. That’s why they’re monitoring all US users of their iPhones for CSAM, or Child Sex Abuse Material, for the safety of the children. Yet, not removing the Facebook app that is clearly trafficking human beings in countless countries.
Furthermore, the WSJ also reported this week that Facebook’s own AI content moderators are unable to detect most languages used on Facebook. How the hell is that even happening? Facebook’s AI and all their might and money and staff, cannot find people in every single language on the planet (as Facebook is used pretty much in every single written language on Earth) to translate what is being said on their own social media platform.
They’re actually blaming the lack of resources on this huge blind spot of human trafficking… really?!
I mean, they’ve got teams and teams of people that seemed to be working 24/7 during 2016-2020 when President Trump and his supporters were being banned and censored left, right, and center. They go after anti-vaxxers like they’re the literal devil, yet child and human trafficking seems to be beyond an afterthought for Facebook.
Facebook should be banned across the world immediately, right?
Made in the U.S.A.: The Sex Trafficking of America’s Children
BY SCOTT PELLEYOCTOBER 4, 2021 / 7:32 AM / CBS NEWS
Her name is Frances Haugen. That is a fact that Facebook has been anxious to know since last month when an anonymous former employee filed complaints with federal law enforcement. The complaints say Facebook’s own research shows that it amplifies hate, misinformation and political unrest—but the company hides what it knows. One complaint alleges that Facebook’s Instagram harms teenage girls. What makes Haugen’s complaints unprecedented is the trove of private Facebook research she took when she quit in May. The documents appeared first, last month, in the Wall Street Journal. But tonight, Frances Haugen is revealing her identity to explain why she became the Facebook whistleblower.
Frances Haugen: The thing I saw at Facebook over and over again was there were conflicts of interest between what was good for the public and what was good for Facebook. And Facebook, over and over again, chose to optimize for its own interests, like making more money.
Frances Haugen is 37, a data scientist from Iowa with a degree in computer engineering and a Harvard master’s degree in business. For 15 years she’s worked for companies including Google and Pinterest.
Frances Haugen: I’ve seen a bunch of social networks and it was substantially worse at Facebook than anything I’d seen before.
Scott Pelley: You know, someone else might have just quit and moved on. And I wonder why you take this stand.
Frances Haugen: Imagine you know what’s going on inside of Facebook and you know no one on the outside knows. I knew what my future looked like if I continued to stay inside of Facebook, which is person after person after person has tackled this inside of Facebook and ground themselves to the ground.
Scott Pelley: When and how did it occur to you to take all of these documents out of the company?
Frances Haugen: At some point in 2021, I realized, “Okay, I’m gonna have to do this in a systemic way, and I have to get out enough that no one can question that this is real.”
She secretly copied tens of thousands of pages of Facebook internal research. She says evidence shows that the company is lying to the public about making significant progress against hate, violence and misinformation. One study she found, from this year, says, “we estimate that we may action as little as 3-5% of hate and about 6-tenths of 1% of V & I [violence and incitement] on Facebook despite being the best in the world at it.”
Scott Pelley: To quote from another one of the documents you brought out, “We have evidence from a variety of sources that hate speech, divisive political speech and misinformation on Facebook and the family of apps are affecting societies around the world.”
Frances Haugen: When we live in an information environment that is full of angry, hateful, polarizing content it erodes our civic trust, it erodes our faith in each other, it erodes our ability to want to care for each other, the version of Facebook that exists today is tearing our societies apart and causing ethnic violence around the world.
‘Ethnic violence’ including Myanmar in 2018 when the military used Facebook to launch a genocide.
Frances Haugen told us she was recruited by Facebook in 2019. She says she agreed to take the job only if she could work against misinformation because she had lost a friend to online conspiracy theories.
Frances Haugen: I never wanted anyone to feel the pain that I had felt. And I had seen how high the stakes were in terms of making sure there was high quality information on Facebook.
At headquarters, she was assigned to Civic Integrity which worked on risks to elections including misinformation. But after this past election, there was a turning point.
Frances Haugen: They told us, “We’re dissolving Civic Integrity.” Like, they basically said, “Oh good, we made it through the election. There wasn’t riots. We can get rid of Civic Integrity now.” Fast forward a couple months, we got the insurrection. And when they got rid of Civic Integrity, it was the moment where I was like, “I don’t trust that they’re willing to actually invest what needs to be invested to keep Facebook from being dangerous.”
Facebook says the work of Civic Integrity was distributed to other units. Haugen told us the root of Facebook’s problem is in a change that it made in 2018 to its algorithms—the programming that decides what you see on your Facebook news feed.
Frances Haugen: So, you know, you have your phone. You might see only 100 pieces of content if you sit and scroll on for, you know, five minutes. But Facebook has thousands of options it could show you.
The algorithm picks from those options based on the kind of content you’ve engaged with the most in the past.
Frances Haugen: And one of the consequences of how Facebook is picking out that content today is it is — optimizing for content that gets engagement, or reaction. But its own research is showing that content that is hateful, that is divisive, that is polarizing, it’s easier to inspire people to anger than it is to other emotions.
Scott Pelley: Misinformation, angry content– is enticing to people and keep–
Frances Haugen: Very enticing.
Scott Pelley:–keeps them on the platform.
Frances Haugen: Yes. Facebook has realized that if they change the algorithm to be safer, people will spend less time on the site, they’ll click on less ads, they’ll make less money.
Haugen says Facebook understood the danger to the 2020 Election. So, it turned on safety systems to reduce misinformation—but many of those changes, she says, were temporary.
Frances Haugen: And as soon as the election was over, they turned them back off or they changed the settings back to what they were before, to prioritize growth over safety.
And that really feels like a betrayal of democracy to me.
Facebook says some of the safety systems remained. But, after the election, Facebook was used by some to organize the January 6th insurrection. Prosecutors cite Facebook posts as evidence—photos of armed partisans and text including, “by bullet or ballot restoration of the republic is coming!” Extremists used many platforms, but Facebook is a recurring theme.
After the attack, Facebook employees raged on an internal message board copied by Haugen. “…Haven’t we had enough time to figure out how to manage discourse without enabling violence?” We looked for positive comments and found this, “I don’t think our leadership team ignores data, ignores dissent, ignores truth…” but that drew this reply, “welcome to Facebook! I see you just joined in November 2020… wehave been watching… wishy-washy actions of company leadership for years now.” “…Colleagues… cannot conscience working for a company that does not do more to mitigate the negative effects of its platform.”
Scott Pelley: Facebook essentially amplifies the worst of human nature.
Frances Haugen: It’s one of these unfortunate consequences, right? No one at Facebook is malevolent, but the incentives are misaligned, right? Like, Facebook makes more money when you consume more content. People enjoy engaging with things that elicit an emotional reaction. And the more anger that they get exposed to, the more they interact and the more they consume.
That dynamic led to a complaint to Facebook by major political parties across Europe. This 2019 internal report obtained by Haugen says that the parties, “…feel strongly that the change to the algorithm has forced them to skew negative in their communications on Facebook… leading them into more extreme policy positions.”
Scott Pelley: The European political parties were essentially saying to Facebook the way you’ve written your algorithm is changing the way we lead our countries.
Frances Haugen: Yes. You are forcing us to take positions that we don’t like, that we know are bad for society. We know if we don’t take those positions, we won’t win in the marketplace of social media.
Evidence of harm, she says, extends to Facebook’s Instagram app.
Scott Pelley: One of the Facebook internal studies that you found talks about how Instagram harms teenage girls. One study says 13.5% of teen girls say Instagram makes thoughts of suicide worse; 17% of teen girls say Instagram makes eating disorders worse.
Frances Haugen: And what’s super tragic is Facebook’s own research says, as these young women begin to consume this– this eating disorder content, they get more and more depressed. And it actually makes them use the app more. And so, they end up in this feedback cycle where they hate their bodies more and more. Facebook’s own research says it is not just the Instagram is dangerous for teenagers, that it harms teenagers, it’s that it is distinctly worse than other forms of social media.
Facebook said, just last week, it would postpone plans to create an Instagram for younger children.
Last month, Haugen’s lawyers filed at least 8 complaints with the Securities and Exchange Commission which enforces the law in financial markets. The complaints compare the internal research with the company’s public face—often that of CEO Mark Zuckerberg—who testified remotely to Congress last March.
Mark Zuckerberg testimony on March 25: We have removed content that could lead to imminent real-world harm. We have built an unprecedented third-party fact checking program. The system isn’t perfect. But it is the best approach that we have found to address misinformation in line with our country’s values.
One of Frances Haugen’s lawyers, is John Tye. He’s the founder of a Washington legal group, called “Whistleblower Aid.”
Scott Pelley: What is the legal theory behind going to the SEC? What laws are you alleging have been broken?
John Tye: As a publicly-traded company, Facebook is required to not lie to its investors or even withhold material information. So, the SEC regularly brings enforcement actions, alleging that companies like Facebook and others are making material misstatements and omissions that affect investors adversely.
Scott Pelley: One of the things that Facebook might allege is that she stole company documents.
John Tye: The Dodd-Frank Act, passed over ten years ago at this point, created an Office of the Whistleblower inside the SEC. And one of the provisions of that law says that no company can prohibit its employees from communicating with the SEC and sharing internal corporate documents with the SEC.
Frances Haugen: I have a lot of empathy for Mark. and Mark has never set out to make a hateful platform. But he has allowed choices to be made where the side effects of those choices are that hateful, polarizing content gets more distribution and more reach.
Facebook declined an interview. But in a written statement to 60 Minutes it said, “every day our teams have to balance protecting the right of billions of people to express themselves openly with the need to keep our platform a safe and positive place. We continue to make significant improvements to tackle the spread of misinformation and harmful content. To suggest we encourage bad content and do nothing is just not true.”
“If any research had identified an exact solution to these complex challenges, the tech industry, governments, and society would have solved them a long time ago.”
Facebook is a $1 trillion company. Just 17 years old, it has 2.8 billion users, which is 60% of all internet-connected people on Earth. Frances Haugen plans to testify before Congress this week. She believes the federal government should impose regulations.
Frances Haugen: Facebook has demonstrated they cannot act independently Facebook, over and over again, has shown it chooses profit over safety. It is subsidizing, it is paying for its profits with our safety. I’m hoping that this will have had a big enough impact on the world that they get the fortitude and the motivation to actually go put those regulations into place. That’s my hope.
Produced by Maria Gavrilovic and Alex Ortiz. Broadcast associate, Michelle Karim. Edited by Michael Mongulla.
Without warning, Facebook crashed on Monday morning.
It’s unclear what caused today’s global outage which saw Facebook, WhatsApp and Instagram all crash.
The shutdown comes after a former Facebook product manager turned “whistleblower” leaked tens of thousands of internal documents published in a blockbuster series of reports published byThe Wall Street Journal.
Facebook executives admit in the internal memos that Zuckerberg “hobbled” America to get vaccinated, facilitates human trafficking and that the company’s subsidiary, Instagram, is harmful to teenagers among the trove of damning information leaked.
However, the whistleblower, 37-year old data scientist Frances Haugen who led Facebook’s Civic Integrity and Misinformation Group starting in 2019, was the chief censor on the social media platform ahead of and during the rigged 2020 election.
Unlike whistleblowers who have previously exposed big tech, Haugen is conspicuously being championed by the mainstream media.
While the latest leaked memos confirm complaints repeatedly leveled against Facebook, the latest expose is suspected to be psy-op contrived by Facebook to conglomerate more power with the help of the federal government.
Facebook executives “see people are leaving Facebook. They’re going to GETTR, they’re going to Telegram. They’re going to all these other places. They’re sharing Rumble,” Human Event’sJack Posobeic told Steve Bannon on Monday. “She was the head censor on FB during the election of 2020. Yet she is going to come out and act like she’s a whistleblower? No.
Haugen is controlled opposition, Posobeic warns.
“She’s realizing the only way to do this is with legislative action. They want the government to step in and they are going to use brute force. They are going to say the only way to fix this, of course, is going to be government action for the ‘greater good,’” he said. “Think of any of the whistleblowers who have come forward from Facebook, Google, Pinterest, from Project Veritas – those are the real whistleblowers. The people who lose their jobs, get lawsuits, get ruined. There’s guys behind bars. Real whistleblowers don’t get thrown on 60 minutes — this is an operation”
Zuckerberg has yet to comment publicly on the slew of allegations published since Sept. 13.Instead, in recent weeks the CEO has posted videos of himself sailing and fencing on his own profile.