Last week, The Wall Street Journal An internal study published from Facebook shows that the social media company knows how toxic its own product is to the people who use it. But tonight, we found out how the journal got those documents: Frances Hausen, a whistleblower who spoke to CBS News 60 minutes The way Facebook is poisoning society.
Whistleblower, 37, has released “thousands” of documents from Facebook and even plans to testify before Congress this week. Hausen has filed at least eight complaints to the SEC alleging that Facebook lied to shareholders about its own products.
Basically, Hausen complains that there is a fundamental conflict between what is good for Facebook and what is good for society. At the end of the day, the good things for Facebook tend to be bad for the world we live in, according to Hagen. We’ve pulled out some of the most interesting news from Sunday’s interview that highlights this central point.
1) Facebook’s algorithm intentionally shows something to annoy users
Hausen Min0 minutes explained how Facebook’s algorithm selects content that can make users angry because it’s the busiest. And it is the user’s busyness that turns Facebook into advertising dollars.
“Its own research shows that content that is malicious, that divisive, that polarizes, is easier to motivate people to anger than other emotions,” Hausen told 60 Minutes.
“Facebook has realized that if they make the algorithm safer, people will spend less time on the site, they will click on fewer ads, they will make less money,” Hagen added.
2) Facebook is worse than other social media companies
Whenever we talk about social media and ways to harm society, many big tech companies come together, be it Twitter or YouTube or Pinterest. But, according to Hagen, Facebook is uniquely terrifying.
“I saw a bunch of social networks and it was worse than anything before on Facebook,” Hausen told 60 Minutes.
Hausen has previously worked at Pinterest and Google, and insists that Facebook is really bad enough compared to the rest of Big Tech.
)) Facebook disbanded its Citizen Integrity Unit after the 2020 election and before the Jan Capital Uprising in January
Hausen worked in Facebook’s so-called Civic Integrity Unit, tasked with tackling political misinformation on the platform. But social media companies think they were clear after the US presidential election in November 2020 and that civic integrity could be shut down.
“They told us, ‘We are dissolving civic integrity.’ For example, they basically said, “Oh well, we did it through elections. There were no riots. We can now get rid of civil integrity.”
It is important to remember that Facebook is not only destroying American democracy, it is tearing apart democratic institutions around the world.
4) Political parties in Europe run negative ads because it was the only way to reach people on Facebook
One of the documents smuggled from the Hausen company shows that European political parties had to start running negative ads on Facebook to get some kind of engagement.
Summarizing the position of political parties in Europe, Hausen explained, “You are forcing us to take positions we do not like, we know it is bad for society. We know if we don’t take those positions, we won’t win the social media market. ”
5) Facebook only identifies a small part of the hate and misinformation on the platform
Facebook’s internal research shows that it identifies fairly; According to a study leaked by Hausen, 3-5% hate and less than 1% violence and provocation on the platform. And yet Facebook considers itself the best in the world to identify hate and provocation on social media.
6) Instagram is making kids miserable
The owner of Facebook Instagram, and Min0 Minute, says Hausen’s leaked documents show that 1 13.5% of teenage girls say Instagram makes suicidal thoughts worse, and 1% say it makes their eating problems worse.
“The saddest thing is that when these young women start eating it – the content of this eating disorder, they become even more frustrated,” says Facebook’s own research. And it actually forces them to use the app more. And so, they end up in this reaction cycle where they hate their body more and more, ”Hausen told 60 Minutes.
And that’s all part of the business model. Facebook is making lots and lots of money from this misery.
7) Employees on Facebook are not necessarily evil, they only have perverted incentives
Hausen says those who work on Facebook are not bad people, which makes it look like someone used to work on Facebook before.
“No one is violent on Facebook, but the incentives are misplaced, aren’t they?” Hausen insisted. “For example, Facebook makes more money when you use more content. People enjoy engaging in things that elicit an emotional response. And the more angry they are, the more they communicate and the more they swallow. . “
And while it’s easy to see why Hausen can believe that “no one” on Facebook is violent, this is a bold claim at the moment. The negative impact of Facebook on society in the 2020s is not a secret.
8) Hausen even has the sympathy of Juke for some stupid reason
“I have a lot of sympathy for Mark. And Mark has never been ready to create a hate platform. But he has allowed me to choose where the side effects of that choice are disgusting, the polarizing content is more distributed and more reaching out.”
But Hausen himself said it doesn’t really matter whether Zuckerberg came out to create a malicious platform. In fact, he started creating a website to give ratings The warmth of women, But it’s not really here or there. How the platform is being used and abused is important.
9) Hausen believes he is covered by the Whistle Blower Act, but we’ll see
When Min0 spoke to Hausen’s lawyer John Tye, who works with whistle blowers, we heard how the law protects people from talking to the SEC.
“The Dodd-Frank Act, passed ten years ago, created a whistleblower office within the SEC. And one provision of that law states that no company can prohibit its employees from communicating with the SEC and sharing internal corporate documents with the SEC. Tie said in 60 minutes.
And while Dodd-Frank imaginatively protects staff from talking to the SEC, it doesn’t necessarily protect people from talking to journalists and receiving thousands of pages of documents. But we’re going to quickly find out how much protection historically whistleblowers actually get in the United States, let’s just say the answer was “Not much. ”