Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has addressed a string of allegations made by whistleblower Frances Hogan, denying that the social media company prioritizes its profits over the safety of its users.
“The core of these accusations is the idea that we prioritize profit over safety and well-being,” Zuckerberg said in a post on his personal page on the platform, which is not true, as reported by aitnews.
Zuckerberg’s comments come nearly a month after reports from the Wall Street Journal relied on internal Facebook research provided by Hugin, who left the social media company in May.
The stories highlight many issues with Facebook’s services that the company is aware of but either ignores or doesn’t solve, and this includes research showing that Facebook realizes that Instagram is harming teens’ mental health.
Of all that is being published, I focus in particular on the questions that have been raised about our work with children. I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about the kinds of experiences I want my kids and others online to have, and it’s very important to me that everything we build is safe and good for kids.
Zuckerberg’s post comes after Hogan testified at the Capitol in front of senators about the problems the social media company is creating for society.
Without referring to Hugin, Zuckerberg said that many of the claims are meaningless. If we were to ignore research, why would we create an industry-leading research program to understand these important issues in the first place, and if we didn’t care about fighting malicious content, then why would we hire so many more People are more dedicated to this purpose than any other company in our industry, and if we want to hide our results, why have we set an industry-leading standard for transparency and reporting on what we do, and if social media is responsible for polarizing society, why are we seeing polarization increasing in the US while It remains stable or declining in many countries with heavy use of social media around the world.
Zuckerberg also added that the argument that we are deliberately promoting content that makes people angry for profit is completely illogical, we make money from ads, and advertisers are constantly telling us that they don’t want their ads to show next to malicious or angry content.
Zuckerberg also called on Congress to update internet regulations that define the age at which teens should be allowed to use online services, how tech companies should check the ages of users, and how companies must balance giving children privacy with giving parents insight into their children’s online activity.
Like balancing other social issues, he wrote, I don’t think private companies should make all decisions on their own, which is why we have advocated updated Internet regulations for several years now.
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