Saturday December 14, 2019
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Mark Zuckerberg Claims Facebook Does Not Sell Users’ Data

Facebook had said it never gave large tech companies access to people's data without their permission as its integration partners "had to get authorisation from people"

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As Facebook turns 15 next month, its Founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg has once again defended the social media giant, saying the company is not selling its users’ data to anyone.

“We don’t sell people’s data, even though it’s often reported that we do,” he wrote in an opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal on Thursday.

“Clickbait and other junk may drive engagement in the near term, but it would be foolish for us to show this intentionally,because it’s not what people want,” he added.

The 1,000-word defence came after Facebook faced intense scrutiny over how it handled data of over two billion users amid several data scandals in recent years.

Facebook, data, vietnam
This photo shows a Facebook app icon on a smartphone in New York. VOA

“Based on what pages people like, what they click on, and other signals, we create categories and then charge advertisers to show ads in that category,” he said.

“You have control over what information we use to show you ads, and you can block any advertiser from reaching you,” the Facebook CEO added.

In December, the social media giant said it never allowed its partners to access users’ private messages without their permission, after a New York Times report claimed that Facebook allowed large technology companies and popular apps like Netflix or Spotify to access its users’ personal information.

Zuckerberg said people “consistently tell us they don’t want to see this content”.

In a bid to prevent foreign interference into elections, facebook has also begun labelling all political and issue ads in the us -- including a "paid for by" disclosure from the advertiser at the top of the advertisement.
Facebook CEO of Mark Zuckerberg. Wikimedia commons

“Advertisers don’t want their brands anywhere near it. The only reason bad content remains is because the people and artificial-intelligence systems we use to review it are not perfect — and not because we have an incentive to ignore it. Our systems are still evolving and improving,” he added.

Also Read- Novel Experimental Vaccine Offering Hope Against Malaria

On collecting personal data, the CEO said: “There’s no question that we collect some information for ads but that information is generally important for security and operating our services as well.”

Facebook had said it never gave large tech companies access to people’s data without their permission as its integration partners “had to get authorisation from people”. (IANS)

Next Story

Facebook Loses its Place in Glassdoor’s ‘Best Places to Work’ List

The Top-100 list by Glassdoor is for large organisations or those with at least 1,000 employees. It bases its rankings on eight factors, including work/life balance, compensation and benefits and senior management, among others

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Social Media, Facebook, Authenticity, Posts
The social media application, Facebook is displayed on Apple's App Store, July 30, 2019. VOA

Mired in several controversies amid break-up calls from the US lawmakers, Facebook has once again slipped off Glassdoor’s “Best Places to Work” list for a second year in a row.

Facebook dropped to 23rd best place to work, falling 16 spots from last year’s position, and its award score fell from a 4.5 to 4.4 out of a perfect 5, according to the annual listing by the leading job website.

The top three spots are occupied by leading growth platform HubSpot, management consultancy firm Bain & Company and market leader in electronic signatures DocuSign, respectively.

Among the tech companies, Google is at 11th spot, LinkedIn at 12th, Microsoft at 21st, Salesforce at 34th, VMware at 36th, Adobe at 39th, Cisco at 77th, Accenture at 83th and Apple at 84th (the Cupertino-based iPhone maker slipped 13 spots from the last year’s list).

Amazon once again failed to enter the list of 100.

For Facebook, 2019 has been bad on the diplomatic front. Several US Senators have called for breaking up the social network amid repeated data breaches and privacy violations on the platform.

Facebook
Facebook has failed to comply with the subpoenas for more information related to the ongoing privacy investigation into its alleged privacy violations and Cambridge Analytica, the media has reported. Pixabay

Democratic presidential candidate Senator Kamala Harris has stressed that authorities should take a serious look at breaking up Facebook as the social network platform is a “utility that has gone unregulated”.

Another Democratic 2020 candidate Senator Elizabeth Warren has also stressed upon the possibility of breaking up Facebook.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, however, rejected these calls, saying the size of the social media giant was actually a benefit to its users and the security of the democratic process.

Zuckerberg has promised his employees to “fight and win” if Democratic presidential hopeful Warren wins the 2020 election and moves forward with her stated plan to break up the big US tech firms.

Also Read: Here’s What India’s Privacy Bill Requires from Social Media Firms

The company in July agreed to pay record-breaking $5 billion to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) as fine for users’ privacy violations in the Cambridge Analytica data scandal involving millions of users.

The US FTC is also investigating Facebook for potential monopolistic practices.

The Top-100 list by Glassdoor is for large organisations or those with at least 1,000 employees. It bases its rankings on eight factors, including work/life balance, compensation and benefits and senior management, among others. (IANS)