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Zuckerberg Denies Allegations Made by Facebook Whistleblower


Credit: Unsplash

Yesterday, former data engineer turned whistleblower Frances Haugen testified before the US Senate, raising concerns about the impact of Facebook on youth, especially regarding mental health. Haugen stated that the prolonged use of Facebook and its affiliated platforms like Instagram has negative effects on teenagers’ well-being. She further alleged that Facebook was aware of these issues but chose not to address them.

Responding to these allegations today, Facebook’s CEO and co-founder Mark Zuckerberg refuted Haugen’s claims, labeling them as false. In a blog post, Zuckerberg stated, “These accusations suggest that we prioritize profit over safety and well-being, which is simply not accurate.”

He also addressed the claim that Facebook promotes content that incites anger for profit, calling it illogical. Zuckerberg explained, “Our revenue comes from advertisements, and advertisers consistently express their preference not to be associated with harmful or provocative content.”

Zuckerberg countered the allegations by highlighting Facebook’s efforts to address harmful content on the platform. He acknowledged that their main challenge in combatting such content stemmed from a shortage of personnel. Zuckerberg emphasized that Facebook employs more individuals dedicated to this cause than any other company in the same industry.

Furthermore, Zuckerberg pointed out that Facebook had adjusted its feed algorithm in 2018 to reduce the spread of misinformation and harmful content. This decision prioritized showing users more content from their friends and family over viral videos, despite the potential decrease in user engagement. Zuckerberg argued that this change, aimed at improving users’ well-being, contradicts the notion of prioritizing profits over people.

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