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Biggest Black Lives Matter Facebook page is fake: Report

Black Lives Matter is a global movement, originating in the African-American community, that campaigns against racism and other violence towards black people

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Facebook is working on launching Athena, its own Internet satellite, early in 2019, the WIRED reported. Pixabay
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The biggest Black Lives Matter page on Facebook was fake with ties to a middle-aged white man in Australia, according to a CNN report. The page, titled simply “Black Lives Matter,” had almost 700,000 followers on Facebook, more than twice as many as the official Black Lives Matter page, the report said late Monday.

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Facebook was accused of leaking data to Cambridge Analytica earlier this year.

It was tied to online fundraisers that brought in at least $100,000 that supposedly went to Black Lives Matter causes in the US.At least some of the money, however, was transferred to Australian bank accounts, according to the report. The page consistently linked to websites tied to Ian Mackay, a National Union of Workers official in Australia. The union represents thousands of workers across various industries.

Mackay has registered dozens of websites, many on issues tied to black rights. In April 2015, Mackay registered blackpowerfist.com. Mackay’s name, email address, phone number and other details appeared in the registration records for the site until July 2015, when the website enabled a feature that allows site owners to hide their identities and contact information.

Also Read: Facebook To Scrutinize Political Ads More

Fundraising campaigns associated with the Facebook page were suspended by PayPal and Patreon after CNN contacted each of the companies for comment. Donorbox and Classy had already removed the campaigns.The discovery raises new questions about the integrity of Facebook’s platform and the content hosted on the social media platform.

In the run-up to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s testimony before Congress this week, the social media giant has announced plans to make the people running large pages verify their identity and location. Only after almost a week of emails and calls between CNN and Facebook about this story, the page was suspended. Facebook was told of concerns about the page some time ago, Patrisse Cullors, a co-founder of the Black Lives Matter movement, told CNN

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The social media app is in news for all the wrong reasons lately. VOA

Black Lives Matter upon suspecting the page was a scam, contacted Facebook about removing it a few months ago, Cullors added. Black Lives Matter is a global movement, originating in the African-American community, that campaigns against racism and other violence towards black people. IANS

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The European Union Warns Facebook Over Consumer’s Data Usage

Facebook said it has already updated its terms of service in May to incorporate changes recommended at that point by EU authorities.

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Silhouettes of mobile users are seen next to a screen projection of Facebook logo in this picture illustration. VOA

The European Union’s consumer protection chief said Thursday she’s growing impatient with Facebook’s efforts to improve transparency with users about their data, warning it could face sanctions for not complying.

EU Consumer Commissioner Vera Jourova turned up the pressure on the social media giant, saying she wants the company to update its terms of service and expects to see its proposed changes by mid-October so they can take effect in December.

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European Justice Commissioner Vera Jourova attends an interview with Reuters at the EU Commission headquarters in Brussels, Belgium. VOA

“I will not hide that I am becoming rather impatient because we have been in dialogue with Facebook almost two years and I really want to see, not the progress — it’s not enough for me — but I want to see the results,” Jourova said.

The EU wants Facebook to give users more information about how their data is used and how it works with third party makers of apps, games and quizzes.

“If we do not see the progress the sanctions will have to come,” she said. She didn’t specify punishment, saying they would be applied by individual countries. “I was quite clear we cannot negotiate forever, we just want to see the result.”

The EU has been pressing the U.S. tech company to look at what changes it needs to make to better protect consumers and this year Facebook has had to adapt to new EU data protection rules. The concerns took on greater urgency after the Cambridge Analytica data privacy scandal erupted, in which data on 87 million Facebook users was allegedly improperly harvested.

Jourova said she hopes Facebook will take more responsibility for its nearly 380 million European users.

“We want Facebook to be absolutely clear to its users about how their service operates and makes money,” she said.

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An advertisement in The New York Times is displayed on Sunday, March 25, 2018, in New York. Facebook’s CEO apologized for the Cambridge Analytica scandal with ads in multiple U.S. and British newspapers. VOA

Facebook said it has already updated its terms of service in May to incorporate changes recommended at that point by EU authorities.

The company said it “will continue our close cooperation to understand any further concerns and make appropriate updates.”

Jourova also said U.S.-based property rental site Airbnb has agreed to clarify its pricing system in response to complaints that it could mislead consumers.

Airbnb has promised to be fully transparent by either including extra fees in the total price for a booking quoted on its website or notifying users that they might apply, she said.

 

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U.S.-based property rental site Airbnb has agreed to clarify its pricing system in response to complaints that it could mislead consumers. Flickr

The company is complying with EU demands spurred by concerns that consumers could be confused by its complicated pricing structure, which could add unexpected costs such as cleaning charges at the end of a holiday.

Airbnb is also changing its terms of service to make it clear that travelers can sue their host if they suffer personal harm or other damages. That’s in response to complaints that its booking system can leave tourists stranded if the rental is canceled when all other arrangements have been already made.

Also Read: EU Regulators Question Online Retailer Amazon’s Data Usage

Airbnb said “guests have always been aware of all fees, including service charges and taxes, before booking listings,” and will work with authorities to make it even clearer. (VOA)