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Mark Zuckerberg: Why Isn’t Anyone Talking About Facebook’s Many Achievements?

Fb’s embattled CEO Mark Zuckerberg tried Monday to discredit the deluge of dangerous press coming his means due to former employee-turned-whistleblower Frances Haugen and the consortium of stories organizations rolling out reports primarily based on the damning inside paperwork she equipped. “What we’re seeing is a coordinated effort to selectively use leaked paperwork to color a false image of our firm,” Zuckerberg reportedly stated on Fb’s third-quarter earnings name, including in the identical breath in his perception that “massive organizations ought to be scrutinized, and I’d a lot somewhat reside in a society the place they’re than one the place they’ll’t be.”

Zuckerberg informed analysts on the Q3 name that he’s “pleased with our report navigating the advanced tradeoffs concerned in working providers at international scale” and “of the analysis and transparency we deliver to our work”—accomplishments that, he reasoned, “any sincere account of how we’ve dealt with these points” ought to think about. All of which sounded considerably dissonant amid reports of the platform’s struggles, or in some cases negligence, on the subject of moderating inflammatory content—reminiscent of hate speech, posts inciting violence, and misinformation—in several developing countries, and on its home turf.

That the Fb chief informed a narrative about his firm at odds with these strewn throughout house pages of a number of outstanding shops is par for the course; fittingly, some of those articles are about his very tendency to take action. Others, as specified by a working listing by Protocol—in addition to by Katie Harbath, Fb’s former director of public coverage, in a Google Doc—element internal fury over the site’s policies and unwillingness to take action on researchers’ findings. Several newsletters Tuesday emphasised the sheer breadth of the info dump—65 totally different tales on Monday—and the way one may go about navigating it most successfully. Particularly provided that the protection exhibits no indicators of stopping, as Platformer’s Casey Newton pointed out: Haugen will “proceed releasing paperwork for the following a number of weeks” and “a bunch of latest publications joined the consortium” on Monday (The Guardian and CNBC are reportedly amongst them). 

Newton additionally famous the methods through which the paperwork help current criticisms of Fb, reminiscent of “the numerous variation in content material moderation sources afforded to totally different international locations”—inequality lawmakers and activists have been flagging for years. It’s “onerous to not marvel as soon as once more at Fb’s sheer measurement; the staggering complexity of understanding the way it works, even for the folks charged with working it,” Newton writes. “There’s a pervasive sense that, on some elementary stage, nobody is solely positive what’s occurring.” 

After reviewing the paperwork and discussing them with present and former Fb staffers, Newton concludes that “it’s clear that a big contingent of employees throughout the firm are attempting diligently to rein within the platform’s worst abuses” by way of “quite a lot of methods which are dizzying of their scope, scale, and class. It’s additionally clear that they’re going through exterior pressures over which they haven’t any management,” Newton says—an argument Zuckerberg appeared to make throughout Monday’s Q3 name as he claimed social media platforms reminiscent of his personal are usually not the primary cause for issues reminiscent of misinformation and hate speech. Political “polarization began rising within the U.S. earlier than I used to be born,” he reportedly said.

In the meantime, different tech CEOs are retaining their distance from Zuckerberg and the chaos that has been constructing round him because the Wall Road Journal, Haugen’s outlet of selection, launched its “Facebook Files” collection. Representatives from TikTok, YouTube, and Snapchat will seem earlier than the Senate Commerce shopper safety subcommittee on Tuesday “with a key precedence: distinguishing their practices from Fb’s,” according to Axios. On the listening to, which comes amid dialogue on authorities regulation of Huge Tech, executives are reportedly anticipated to emphasise security practices they’ve applied, reminiscent of TikTok disabling direct messages for customers beneath 16, and the way their choices and finest practices differ from Fb’s.

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