Who’s Frances Haugen, the Fb whistleblower?

A Data scientist who on Sunday as the. was revealed Facebook Whistleblower says that whenever there is a conflict between the public good and what is good for the company, the social media giant would choose its own interests.

Frances Haugen was born in a. identified “60 minutes” Interview on Sunday as the woman who anonymously submitted complaints to the federal police that the company’s own investigations show how hatred and misinformation are intensified as a result.

Haugen, who at. worked Google and Pinterest before Join Facebook in 2019, said she asked to work in an area of ​​the company fighting misinformation after losing a friend to online conspiracy theories.

“Facebook has shown time and time again that it chooses profit over security,” she said. Haugen, who will testify before Congress this week, said she hoped that through its publication, the government would put regulations in place to regulate the company’s activities.

She said Facebook had disabled the security precautions early to thwart misinformation and curb the incitement afterwards Joe Biden defeated Donald Trump last year, claiming this contributed to the deadly January 6 invasion of the United States US Capitol.

After the election, the company disbanded a civic integrity unit in which she had worked dangerously. “

It’s about algorithms that control what appears in users’ newsfeeds and how they prefer hateful content. Haugen said a change in the flow of content in 2018 added more divide and ill-will in a network supposedly created to bring people closer together.

Despite the hostility that the new algorithms nurtured, Facebook found that they helped keep people coming back – a pattern that helped the social media giant in Menlo Park, California sell more of the digital ads that generate most of its advertising.

Facebook’s annual revenue has more than doubled from $ 56 billion in 2018 to an estimated $ 119 billion this year, based on estimates by analysts surveyed by FactSet. The company’s market value has now risen from $ 375 billion at the end of 2018 to nearly $ 1 trillion now.

Even before the full interview was published on Sunday, a top Facebook manager ridiculed the whistleblower’s allegations as “misleading”.

“Social media has had a huge impact on society in recent years, and Facebook is often a place where much of this debate takes place.” Nick Cleggthe company’s vice president of politics and public affairs wrote in a memo sent to Facebook employees on Friday. “But the evidence out there just doesn’t support the idea that Facebook or social media in general is the main cause of polarization.”

The “60 Minutes” interview intensifies the spotlight on Facebook is already bright how legislators and regulatory authorities around the world are questioning the immense opinion-forming power of social networks and their polarizing effects on society.

Facebook whistleblower

The backlash has intensified since the Wall Street Journal published a revelation in mid-September that revealed that Facebook’s internal research had concluded that the social network’s attention-grabbing algorithms had helped fuel political disagreement and cause psychological disagreement and to contribute to emotional problems in teenagers, especially girls. After copying thousands of pages of Facebook’s internal research, Haugen leaked them to the Journal to lay the groundwork for a series of stories that were packaged as “Facebook files”.

Even though Facebook Claiming the Journal selected the most harmful information in the internal documents to cast the company in the worst possible light, the revelations resulted in an indefinite delay in the launch of a children’s version of its popular photo and video sharing app, Instagram. Facebook currently requires people to at least 13 years old to open an Instagram account.

Clegg appeared on CNNs “Reliable Source” Sunday in another preventive attempt to soften the blow from Haugen’s interview.

“Even with the most advanced technology that I believe we are using, even with the tens of thousands of people we employ to maintain the security and integrity of our platform,” Clegg told CNN, “we will never be absolute moreover 100% of the time. “

He said that was due to the “immediate and spontaneous form of communication” Facebook, added, “I think we are doing more than any reasonable person can expect.”

Frances Haugen and her greatest revelations

By choosing to appear on “60 Minutes”, Haugen chose television’s most popular newscast in one evening, as viewership figures in many parts of the country directly on one NFL game between Green Bay and Pittsburgh.

Haugen, 37, is from Iowa and has a degree in computer engineering and a master’s degree in business administration from Harvard University – the same school that also has Facebook founders and leaders Mark Zuckerberg visited.

The 37-year-old Haugen has filed at least eight complaints with US securities regulators according to “60 Minutes” alleging that Facebook broke the law by withholding information about the risks of its social network. Facebook in turn, could take legal action against her if it is alleged that she stole confidential information from the company.

“Nobody on Facebook is malicious,” said Haugen during the interview. “But the incentives are misaligned, right? For example, Facebook makes more money when you consume more content. People like to deal with things that provoke an emotional response. And the more anger they are exposed to, the more they interact and the more they consume. “

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