Facebook, whistleblower Haugen’s accusations also on Meta
The dossier on the EU table
The former employee of the social network at the hearing in the European Parliament. The Digital Services Act is the measure indicated as decisive for the protection of personal data and, above all, of democracies. Europe is following the affair with great attention and further squeezes are not ruled out
10 Nov 2021
Meta, the new Facebook brand and project, is back in the eye of the storm with the recent statements by whistleblower Frances Haugen, the former employee who has made public thousands of internal documents that would reveal the lack of attention of social media to the protection of personal data. Now, in an interview with the Associated Press, Haugen has reiterated her concern for the privacy and security of users in the metaverse world presented by Mark Zuckerberg.
Haugen is also discussing these issues with the European authorities. In a hearing at the Internal Market Commission of the EU Parliament he said that the Digital services act, the new package of European Union rules on digital services, “will be a great opportunity to change the digital world forever, for bringing platforms towards innovation no longer just following the law of profit and to save our democracies “.
The metaverse, in Zuckerberg’s vision, is the future of the Internet, transformed into an immersive virtual world that we live not through a screen but as protagonists. People will be able to meet, work, play and study using augmented reality glasses and glasses. Haugen said this parallel world would force people to give up more personal information, create addiction, and give Meta another monopoly in the online world.
Index of topics
• The whistleblower’s attack on the metaverse: “We will sell more data”
• “Nobody can control Facebook, a situation that is no longer sustainable”
The whistleblower’s attack on the metaverse: “We will sell more data”
Haugen has already had the opportunity to state (she did so at the opening of the Web Summit in Lisbon) that the Meta project “doesn’t make sense” and that Facebook won’t change as long as Zuckerberg is at the helm. Now you told the PA that the CEO was quick to give priority to the metaverse because “if you don’t like the conversation, try to change it”. “Facebook should have a transparency plan for the metaverse,” Haugen pointed out, stressing that the company “continues to prioritize its profits over safety”. The goal would be to increase the number of users by enhancing engagement. Haugen argues that Facebook’s systems amplify hatred and extremism online and fail to protect young people from harmful content.
Zuckerberg dismissed the former employee’s claims as a “coordinated effort” to provide a false image of the company. In the presentation of the new brand, the number one of Facebook stated that the construction of the metaverse is in its infancy and that Meta wants to carry out the project with the participation of the entire community of developers and so that privacy, security and interoperability are integrated by design. It is also true that, as it is conceived, this virtual parallel world will need our personal data analyzed by artificial intelligence algorithms to be realized. And it will give birth to a new business of metaverse objects and activities sold online and offline.
“Nobody can control Facebook, a situation that is no longer sustainable”
Before the European Parliament, Haugen said that the problem with Zuckerberg’s projects lies in the fact that “no one outside of Facebook knows what is really going on inside” and “since access to data by governments and authorities would involve the violation of market secrecy, this leads to a situation in which Facebook does not allow itself to be judged by anyone. This is no longer sustainable ”.
Haugen’s statements, as reported by the Wall Street Journal, give EU legislators a new motivation to tighten the rules on digital giants: after the meetings of the European authorities with the former Facebook employee, the commissioner for the digital market Thierry Breton said that Europe “is serious about regulating what is still a Far West”. The Digital services act could tighten the barriers and controls on the activity of social platforms.