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Title Title
Facebook's latest crisis is a matter of consent, not privacy Facebook may promise privacy but business model is built on its absence
Summary Summary
Online world is full of possible data leaks which the public has not been vigilant at plugging Cambridge Analytica scandal was a result of Facebook's 'DNA', not a bug: personal data has made it a fortune and it is insatiable
Highlights Highlights
  Almost every Facebook user scraped by 'malicious actors' , 'Facebook makes money...by selling our attention to advertisers' , The true customers are advertisers and politicians , 'You have zero privacy...get over it'
Content Content
  <strong>Facebook users who Mark Zuckerberg once referred to as "dumb fucks" in early 2004 are now facing up to the reality behind that insult. With admissions from the company that almost all its 2 billion users probably had their data harvested by "<a href="https://newsroom.fb.com/news/2018/04/restricting-data-access/">malicious actors</a>," and that 87 million – not 50 million – profiles were probably used by Cambridge Analytica, the business model powering Facebook is <a href="https://www.wikitribune.com/story/2018/03/22/technology/q-a-facebook-cambridge-analytica-and-the-ethics-of-big-data/56352/">being laid bare</a>.</strong>
  Cambridge Analytica <a href="https://ca-commercial.com/news/ca-responds-announcement-gsr-dataset-potentially-contained-87-million-records">denied</a> it used any more than 30 million profiles, saying they were gained under an agreement with a Cambridge University academic. However, Facebook's latest disclosures suggest nearly three times that number. Perhaps more significantly, the social network acknowledged that virtually every users' data may have been open to being gathered.
  Facebook said in a <a href="https://newsroom.fb.com/news/2018/04/restricting-data-access/">blog post</a> that "malicious actors" took advantage of its platform, admitting that "most people on Facebook could have had their public profile scraped." Facebook didn't disclose who the malicious actors are or how the data might've been used, but said it's working to close the gaps in its policy and security.
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">That a company valued at nearly $500 billion could not afford – or rather did not try – to implement stronger privacy from the start is telling to the critics who described the essence of the free-services-for-personal-data model as: <a href="https://longform.org/posts/you-are-the-product">"You are the product"</a> <em>(Longform)</em>.</span>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;"> Facebook is scrambling to save its reputation by saying it will close loopholes and push out new privacy measures. But with this action</span><span style="font-weight: 400;">, the company risks allowing its critics to infer that privacy wasn't its main concern all along. Rather, its interests had always been the commercial exploitation of the "dumb fucks," not its motto of "<a href="https://www.facebook.com/notes/mark-zuckerberg/bringing-the-world-closer-together/10154944663901634/">bringing the world closer together</a>."</span>
  Zuckerberg has <a href="http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-43643729">agreed to appear</a> before the United States Senate judiciary and commerce committees and the House energy and commerce committee, and will send top lieutenants to <a href="https://in.reuters.com/article/us-facebook-privacy-australia/australia-begins-privacy-investigation-into-facebook-idINKCN1HC0BF">other inquiries worldwide</a>. Since the scandal, Facebook says it will increase its privacy restrictions with <a href="https://newsroom.fb.com/news/2018/04/terms-and-data-policy/">new, more transparent policies</a>. These include making it easier for users to see the data Facebook has on them, and no longer providing information from data brokers to advertisers – though of course it will continue to sell directly to advertisers.
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  <h2>'They trust me...'</h2>
<b>“They ‘trust me’. Dumb fucks” is a sentence that will ever haunt Mark Zuckerberg. The Facebook billionaire <a href="https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2010/09/20/the-face-of-facebook">said it when he was 19</a> when the social network was in its fast-growing infancy. Since the Cambridge Analytica scandal broke over misuse of 50 million Facebook profiles, angry users have been harking back to that quote as 'proof' that Facebook was never really on their side. </b> “They ‘trust me.’ Dumb fucks." Those two sentences forever haunt Mark Zuckerberg. The billionaire <a href="https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2010/09/20/the-face-of-facebook">made the statement at age 19,</a> when his social network was in its fast-growing infancy. Now, of course, it's a money-machine with <a href="https://investor.fb.com/investor-news/press-release-details/2018/Facebook-Reports-Fourth-Quarter-and-Full-Year-2017-Results/default.aspx">a revenue over $40 billion in 2017</a>, a 47 percent increase on the previous year.
  That revenue is based on access to more than 2 billion users, many of whom, judging by reaction to the recent scandal, are becoming ever-more aware of Facebook's motives behind the use of their data.
  It's been nearly 20 years since Sun Microsystems then-CEO Scott McNealy <a href="https://www.wired.com/1999/01/sun-on-privacy-get-over-it/">told</a> <a href="https://www.wired.com/1999/01/sun-on-privacy-get-over-it/"><em>Wired</em>:</a> "You have zero privacy anyway. Get over it." Zuckerberg echoed the sentiment in 2010, predicting that as social media grows, privacy will no longer be a “<a href="https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2010/jan/11/facebook-privacy">social norm.</a>”
  <blockquote><span style="font-weight: 400;">'The problem is the hijacking of the human mind' - former Google ethicist</span></blockquote>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">That the Cambridge Analytica scandal wasn't technically a data leak because it was based on legal agreements is beside the point. For many of its critics, the real problem is a laissez-faire approach to user privacy that happens to be central to Facebook's business model.</span>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">“Privacy has always been a relative issue for the companies that dominate the consumer internet economy," <a href="https://www.ft.com/content/15719b92-2db1-11e8-a34a-7e7563b0b0f4">wrote</a> Richard Waters in the </span><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Financial Times</span></i> (<em>may be behind paywall</em>)<span style="font-weight: 400;">. "It is not about aspiring to some absolute standard for protecting user data: instead, what matters are the generally accepted standards of the time.”</span>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">Jörg Pohle, a researcher at the Berlin-based</span><a href="https://www.hiig.de/en/"> <span style="font-weight: 400;">Humboldt Institute for Internet and Society</span></a>, told <em>WikiTribune</em><span style="font-weight: 400;"> that Facebook has never shown it cared about privacy. "There are many competing understandings and interpretations of privacy, and related concepts like surveillance or data protection...</span>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">"Nothing in Facebook's policy documents indicates that Facebook understands your privacy as something that needs to be protected against Facebook itself."</span>
  Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook's COO, this week acknowledged that the company may have got the “balance” between openness and privacy wrong. "I think we were very idealistic and not rigorous enough,” <a href="https://www.today.com/news/sheryl-sandberg-today-other-facebook-data-breaches-possible-t126579">she told the Today show</a>.
  <h2><b>Facebook's just being Facebook</b></h2>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">Industry analysts say Facebook's very structure has virtually ensured that the platform was rife for exploitation, and that data misuse was inevitable. Historically, the site has limited privacy shields for personal data across the network. Perhaps, then, the</span><span style="font-weight: 400;"> scandal over Cambridge Analytica is better seen as a result of Facebook's DNA, not a bug or unforeseen flaw in the system</span>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">For someone like Andy Yen, <a href="https://www.wikitribune.com/story/2018/03/31/internet/interview-encryption-is-becoming-more-democratic-says-ceo-of-protonmail/58727/">CEO of ProtonMail</a>, the free, encrypted and self-destructing email service famously used by Cambridge Analytica CEO Andrew Nix, Facebook's centralization of personal data has always been the problem.</span>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">"People talk about regulation, control, security, but I don’t think it matters whether the data was sold, hacked or breached." Yen told </span><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">WikiTribune</span></i><span style="font-weight: 400;">. "That’s not the key point. The fact that this data exists causes a clear, present danger."</span>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">It's not that Facebook lacks the means to build privacy safeguards into its system – it's simply not in its financial interest to do so, he said. "It’s not a technical limitation of the internet," said Yen. "It's entirely a business limitation."</span>
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<span style="font-weight: 400;">Social media users are now having an agitated conversation about the power Facebook wields over them. At the core of the chatter are serious concerns about privacy and use of personal data.</span> <span style="font-weight: 400;">The social network dominates the advertising technology space called "ad-tech." Ad-tech is an umbrella term for software tools that help companies target, deliver, and analyze their advertising efforts.</span>
It's nearly 20 years since Scott McNealy, then with Sun Microsystems, <a href="https://www.wired.com/1999/01/sun-on-privacy-get-over-it/">put it bluntly</a> (<em>Wired</em>): "You have zero privacy anyway. Get over it." But despite Edward Snowden's revelations about the National Security Agency in 2013, despite various exposes of Facebook data being used by researchers, the public's concern for its social media data never seemed to be very great.  
The “real story is more troubling,” wrote journalist <a href="https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/contributor/lorenzo-franceschi-bicchierai">Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai</a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> for </span><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Motherboard</span></i><span style="font-weight: 400;">. The real trouble is that the “data collection was par for the course. In other words, it was a feature, not a bug.” </span>  
<h2><b>Weak privacy-by-design </b></h2>  
<span style="font-weight: 400;">That it wasn’t a data breach is perhaps alarming. If nothing was breached, then what was there? Few serious privacy safeguards in Facebook from the start. </span>  
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">Facebook invests heavily in ad-tech because it makes its money by monetizing users' data for advertising. Lots of money. The Facebook News Feed – most people's primary gateway into the platform, for example, accounts for more than $30 billion of the site's annual advertising revenue,</span><a href="https://www.fastcompany.com/40490938/what-does-facebook-messenger-mean-for-the-future-of-political-propaganda"> <span style="font-weight: 400;">according</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> to </span><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Fast Company. </span></i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Overall, its ad revenue is <a href="https://www.campaignlive.co.uk/article/facebook-ad-revenue-49-despite-user-number-fall/1456005">more than $40 billion</a>. </span>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">"Facebook makes money ... by profiling us and then selling our attention to advertisers, political actors, and others," wrote techno-sociologist Zeynep Tufecki in the </span><a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/19/opinion/facebook-cambridge-analytica.html"><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">New York Times</span></i></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">. "These are Facebook’s true customers, whom it works hard to please."</span>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;"><a href="https://twitter.com/tristanharris?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor">Tristan Harris</a>, a former design ethicist at Google, said that subtle techniques, such as the Facebook "Like" button, are designed to keep people on the site, so that profitable attention does not slip away.</span>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">"</span><span style="font-weight: 400;">The problem is the hijacking of the human mind: systems that are better and better at steering what people are paying attention to," <a href="https://www.wired.com/story/our-minds-have-been-hijacked-by-our-phones-tristan-harris-wants-to-rescue-them/">he told<em> Wired</em></a></span><span style="font-weight: 400;">.</span>
  <h2><b>Did Facebook ever care about our privacy?</b></h2>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">“People don't care about privacy until they do,” </span><a href="https://www.oii.ox.ac.uk/people/brent-mittelstadt/"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Brent Mittelstadt</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">, a research fellow at the Oxford Internet Institute, told </span><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">WikiTribune</span></i><span style="font-weight: 400;">. </span>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">Facebook users are no different. </span>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">Over the years, Facebook’s porous and heavily commercial approach to privacy has </span><a href="https://www.nbcnews.com/tech/social-media/timeline-facebook-s-privacy-issues-its-responses-n859651"><span style="font-weight: 400;">resulted in numerous </span><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">mea culpas</span></i></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> (see list below). In 2007, Zuckerberg issued a public apology over a Facebook program called <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Facebook_Beacon">Beacon</a>, which allowed companies to track users' purchases without their permission. In 2011, the company <a href="https://www.ftc.gov/news-events/press-releases/2011/11/facebook-settles-ftc-charges-it-deceived-consumers-failing-keep">came to an agreement</a> with the Federal Trade Commission over its alleged misbehavior in creating a false impression of privacy, including accepting regular privacy audits. </span>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">These were only few of the milestones along the way in the recurring issue of Facebook's handling of privacy. They were warnings, but generally the rumpus would die down as millions of people continued to "Like" and "Share." Privacy</span><a href="https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2010/04/facebook-timeline"> <span style="font-weight: 400;">settings were there</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> – if not obvious or easy, as Matt McKeon of the Electronic Frontier Foundation reported in 2010. But, much like the Terms and Conditions</span><a href="https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/mar/03/terms-of-service-online-contracts-fine-print"> <span style="font-weight: 400;">the masses famously ignore (</span><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">The Guardian)</span></i></a>, <span style="font-weight: 400;">privacy settings were a chore that many just ignored.</span>
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<span style="font-weight: 400;">Much of this centers around Zuckerberg’s notion of privacy. </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">In 2010 Zuckerberg said that privacy would no longer be a “</span><a href="https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2010/jan/11/facebook-privacy"><span style="font-weight: 400;">social norm</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">” as social media grows. But there’s also the business aspect. As Richard Waters </span><a href="https://www.ft.com/content/15719b92-2db1-11e8-a34a-7e7563b0b0f4"><span style="font-weight: 400;">writes</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> in the </span><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Financial Times</span></i><span style="font-weight: 400;">:</span>  <span style="font-weight: 400;">Andrew Keen, author of</span> <i><span style="font-weight: 400;">The Internet is Not the Answer</span></i><span style="font-weight: 400;">,</span><a href="https://www.wikitribune.com/story/2018/04/05/internet/provocative-prescient-andrew-keen-predicted-the-crisis-over-privacy/59383/"> <span style="font-weight: 400;">told</span> <i><span style="font-weight: 400;">WikiTribune</span></i></a> <span style="font-weight: 400;">that Facebook’s convenience and free service is why </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">"people don’t want it to have bad repercussions, they’d rather not think about it.”</span>
<span style="font-weight: 400;">“Privacy has always been a relative issue for the companies that dominate the consumer internet economy. It is not about aspiring to some absolute standard for protecting user data: instead, what matters are the generally accepted standards of the time.”</span>  
<span style="font-weight: 400;">Facebook itself is an open platform not just for users, but also for outside developers and researchers to build apps and programs on top of it. It’s why someone like Aleksandr Kogan, the University of Cambridge professor involved in the Cambridge Analytica scandal, can build his quiz app on the platform, harvest the data and sell it to the data-analytic company which used it for political goals. </span>  
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">“It’s free, so why wouldn’t you want to believe in all the nonsense that Zuckerberg tells everyone?" Keen said. "But then when it becomes clear that they are actually mining our data, people have to make hard choices."</span>
  <h2><b>To delete or not to delete</b></h2>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">The #DeleteFacebook movement flared up briefly after the Cambridge Analytica scandal. It gained steam when Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk and Whatsapp co-founder, Brian Acton, joined the global chorus of critics. The </span><span style="font-weight: 400;"><a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/03/25/the-regulation-moat/">lack of a viable alternative</a> <em>(TechCrunch)</em>,</span><span style="font-weight: 400;"> however, means these movements are unlikely to have significant impact.</span>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">“The 'delete Facebook' thing is one solution for a certain type of user,” said </span><a href="https://www.oii.ox.ac.uk/people/brent-mittelstadt/"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Mittelstadt</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> at the Oxford Internet Institute. “For people concerned about their privacy, it can be step in the right direction. But this is also ignoring the fact that, in a lot of countries, Facebook is essentially the internet. So it’s not helpful in that context.”</span>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">Facebook's monopoly allows it to gather users' data even if they're not on Facebook. It's the reason why it acquires other platforms such as Instagram, with 800 million monthly users, and WhatsApp, with 1.5 billion monthly users. Facebook itself hit more than 2 billion monthly users in 2017.</span>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">Knowing this, internet browser developer Mozilla announced in March an add-on called </span><a href="https://blog.mozilla.org/blog/2018/03/27/facebook-container-add-on/"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Facebook Container</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> that hides the identity of Facebook users from the rest of the Web.</span>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">“The difference is that it will be much harder for Facebook to use your activity collected off Facebook to send you ads and other targeted messages,” according to Mozilla. The add-on is an option for those who don’t want to delete Facebook but want to protect their privacy.</span>
  <h2>Security will not change business model</h2>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">As the world becomes more digitized, more data-driven, privacy will be harder to maintain and cyberattacks more of a pressing risk. New regulations, such as Europe’s </span><a href="https://www.wikitribune.com/story/2018/03/21/technology/the-general-data-protection-regulation-explained/50774/"><span style="font-weight: 400;">General Data Protection Regulation</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> (GDPR) and Germany’s</span><a href="https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Netzwerkdurchsetzungsgesetz"> <span style="font-weight: 400;">NetzDG</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">, will set new rules for how Facebook can operate in Europe. Zuckerberg said he expects to use the European GDPR system as a guideline for the type of privacy protection the company should offer throughout the world.</span>
<span style="font-weight: 400;">In the case of Kogan, third-party selling was where Facebook drew the line, but by that time it was already too late. </span> <span style="font-weight: 400;">But for ProtonMail's Yen, the internet's entire business model needs to be revised, as well as the perspective of users.</span>
<span style="font-weight: 400;">“Privacy is a contested concept,” said Jorg Pohle, a researcher at the Humboldt Internet Institute. </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">"That means that there are many competing understandings and interpretations of privacy (and related concepts like surveillance or data protection). The issue at hand might simply be that Facebook is not following your understanding of privacy.” </span><span style="font-weight: 400;"> </span>   
<span style="font-weight: 400;">"Nothing in Facebook's policy documents indicates that Facebook understands your privacy as something that need to be protected against Facebook itself,” he told </span><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">WikiTribune</span></i><span style="font-weight: 400;">. </span>  
<h2><b>A feature that turned into a bug  </b></h2>   
<span style="font-weight: 400;">Facebook’s laissez-faire approach to privacy served it well for a while when it came to collecting data. By allowing millions of apps on its platform, from Farmville to Candy Crush,  it could better understand users’ habits. Users were also happy to sign onto other platforms using their Facebook credentials, allowing AirBnb, Uber or Spotify to access a vast trove of information and insight in return for Facebook accessing theirs. </span>  
<span style="font-weight: 400;">Over time, Facebook would begin to dominate the advertising technology (or ad-tech) space. Ad-tech is an umbrella term for software tools to help companies target, deliver and analyze their advertising efforts. One of the practices include omni-channel marketing, which reaches consumers across all channels: mobile, video, desktop. </span>  
<span style="font-weight: 400;">Facebook invests heavily in ad-tech, because it makes its money by monetizing its users data through advertising. News Feed, unveiled in 2006, accounts for more than $30 billion in annual of its advertising revenue, according to Fast Company. </span>  
<span style="font-weight: 400;">"Facebook makes money, in other words, by profiling us and then selling our attention to advertisers, political actors and others. These are Facebook’s true customers, whom it works hard to please," <a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/19/opinion/facebook-cambridge-analytica.html">writes</a> techno-sociologist Zeynep Tufecki for the <em>New York Times</em>. </span>   
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">"The whole business model of mining data, to serve ads to make money, that is fundamentally a flawed model," he said. "You cannot really add security or add safeguards to fix business models."</span>
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  <span style="font-weight: 400;">The rolling debate over online privacy is becoming more about who gets to control the information </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">than strictly keeping information secure. Despite technically being an open, social platform, Facebook's centralization of information, Yen explained, "</span><span style="font-weight: 400;">is a huge risk to not only privacy but also to democracy as a whole."</span>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">Tim Berners Lee, inventor of the Web,</span><a href="https://www.wikitribune.com/story/2018/03/12/internet/inventor-of-the-world-wide-webs-opinion-29-years-on/54657/"> <span style="font-weight: 400;">said his intention</span></a> <span style="font-weight: 400;">for it was the distribution of information that can be universally accessed. But it's perhaps the prescient words of</span><a href="https://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/William_Gibson"> <span style="font-weight: 400;">sci-fi writer William Gibson</span></a> <span style="font-weight: 400;">that better reflects today: "The future is already here, it's just not evenly distributed."</span>
  <span style="font-weight: 400;">The looming problem is that most of the world's information is concentrated in the hands of</span><a href="https://www.wsj.com/articles/the-race-is-on-to-challenge-google-facebook-duopoly-in-digital-advertising-1497864602"> <span style="font-weight: 400;">one-half of a duopoly</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> (</span><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">WSJ</span></i><span style="font-weight: 400;">). Such concentration of information in a system with weak privacy designs make it easier for "malicious actors" to exploit information technology for propaganda and psychological operations. </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">If Facebook continues this way, those “</span><a href="https://www.wired.com/story/inside-facebook-mark-zuckerberg-2-years-of-hell/"><span style="font-weight: 400;">hellish two years</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">” </span><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Wired</span></i> described in February <span style="font-weight: 400;">are far from over.</span>
  <hr />
From this perspective, privacy is actually incompatible with Facebook's business mode. <h2><b>Timeline of Facebook's privacy developments</b></h2>
<span style="font-weight: 400;">Eventually, Facebook’s laissez-faire approach would </span><a href="https://www.nbcnews.com/tech/social-media/timeline-facebook-s-privacy-issues-its-responses-n859651"><span style="font-weight: 400;">result in many </span><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">mea culpas</span></i></a>, as demonstrated by the timeline below:  
<ul> <ul>
<li>2004 - Facebook launches as The Facebook, a campus social network. Mark Zuckerberg makes his "dumb fucks" comment.</li>  
<li>2006 – Harvard researchers working on a psychology project use information from profiles of users without asking their permission (see <em>Harvard’s Privacy Meltdown</em>)</li>  
<li>2011 – Facebook opens information to app developers</li>  
   <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">2004 – Facebook launches as The Facebook, a Harvard University social network. Mark Zuckerberg makes his infamous "dumb fucks" comment, referring to its early users' naiveté in trusting him.</span></li>
   <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">2006 – Harvard researchers working on a psychology project</span><a href="https://www.chronicle.com/article/Harvards-Privacy-Meltdown/128166"> <span style="font-weight: 400;">use information from profiles of users</span></a> <span style="font-weight: 400;">without asking their permission (</span><i><span style="font-weight: 400;">Chronicle of Higher Education</span></i><span style="font-weight: 400;">).</span></li>
   <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">2011 – Facebook opens user information and activity to app developers.</span></li>
<li>2011 - Facebook comes to agreement with US Federal Trade Commission over its misbehavior in creating an impression of privacy which did not exist <a href="https://www.ftc.gov/news-events/press-releases/2011/11/facebook-settles-ftc-charges-it-deceived-consumers-failing-keep">https://www.ftc.gov/news-events/press-releases/2011/11/facebook-settles-ftc-charges-it-deceived-consumers-failing-keep</a></li>  <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">2011 – Facebook comes to</span><a href="https://www.ftc.gov/news-events/press-releases/2011/11/facebook-settles-ftc-charges-it-deceived-consumers-failing-keep"> <span style="font-weight: 400;">agreement with U.S. Federal Trade Commission</span></a> <span style="font-weight: 400;">over its misbehavior in creating a false impression of privacy, including accepting regular privacy audits.</span></li>
<li>2014 - Psychological experiment to do with people's <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2014/jun/29/facebook-users-emotions-news-feeds">mood after being shown negative news</a> stories carried out</li>  
<li>2018- (January) Facebook announces new "<a href="https://www.reuters.com/article/us-facebook-sandberg-privacy/facebook-to-hand-privacy-controls-to-users-ahead-of-eu-law-idUSKBN1FC1Q6">privacy cente</a>r" on the site which it says will make protecting privacy easier by putting all the settings in one place</li>  
<li>2018- Cambridge Analytica scandal breaks in March.</li>  
   <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">2014 – Psychological experiment measures subjects' </span><a href="https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2014/jun/29/facebook-users-emotions-news-feeds"><span style="font-weight: 400;">moods after being shown negative news</span></a> <span style="font-weight: 400;">stories, sparking outrage from those who felt they were manipulated. Facebook announced new guidelines on how to approach such experiments in the future. </span></li>
   <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">2018 – In January, Facebook announces new "</span><a href="https://www.reuters.com/article/us-facebook-sandberg-privacy/facebook-to-hand-privacy-controls-to-users-ahead-of-eu-law-idUSKBN1FC1Q6"><span style="font-weight: 400;">privacy center,</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">" which it says will make protecting privacy easier by putting all privacy settings in one place.</span></li>
   <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">2018 – Cambridge Analytica</span><a href="https://www.wikitribune.com/story/2018/03/22/internet/political-data-firm-cambridge-analytica-suspended-by-facebook-after-expose/56110/"> <span style="font-weight: 400;">scandal breaks</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> in March. Facebook introduces new privacy measures and tools already in development to comply with Europe's forthcoming </span><a href="https://www.wikitribune.com/story/2018/03/21/technology/european-union-forces-the-pace-on-protection-of-individual-data-on-the-internet/52069/"><span style="font-weight: 400;">General Data Protection Regulation.</span></a></li>
</ul> </ul>
<h2><b>Containing Facebook </b></h2>  
<span style="font-weight: 400;">Reaction was swift after the Cambridge Analytica scandal, with #DeleteFacebook gaining rapid steam when top names including Elon Musk and Whatsapp co-founder, Brian Acton joined the chorus – </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">before it slowly went away. A </span><a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/03/25/the-regulation-moat/"><span style="font-weight: 400;">lack of a viable alternative</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> means this is unlikely to materialize. Facebook is integrated in many parts of civic society, from helping people to find jobs to organizing mass protests such as the recent March for Our Lives. </span>  
<span style="font-weight: 400;">“The 'delete Facebook' thing is one solution for a certain type of user,” <a href="https://www.oii.ox.ac.uk/people/brent-mittelstadt/" rel="external">Brent Mittelstadt</a>, a research fellow at the Oxford Internet Institute, told <em>WikiTribune</em>. “For people concerned about their privacy, it can be step in the right direction. But this is also ignoring the fact that, in a lot of countries, Facebook is essentially the internet. So it’s not helpful in that context.”  </span>  
<span style="font-weight: 400;">New instruments such as Europe’s <a href="https://www.wikitribune.com/story/2018/03/21/technology/the-general-data-protection-regulation-explained/50774/">General Data Protection Regulation</a> (GDPR) and Germany’s NetzDG will set new rules for how Facebook can play on their turf. At the heart of GDPR is full consent and accountability: users own their data, but the onus is on companies to make sure that data is protected. Compliance must be built into the system. And if you don’t want to delete Facebook, under GDPR, you can request for your data to be deleted. </span>  
<span style="font-weight: 400;">Mozilla, the internet browser company, announced an Add-on called ‘</span><a href="https://blog.mozilla.org/blog/2018/03/27/facebook-container-add-on/"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Facebook Container</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">’, which isolate the identity of Facebook users from the rest of the web. </span>  
<span style="font-weight: 400;">“</span><span style="font-weight: 400;">The difference is that it will be much harder for Facebook to use your activity collected </span><b>off Facebook</b><span style="font-weight: 400;"> to send you ads and other targeted messages,” according to a blog post by Mozilla. The Add-on is an option for those who don’t want to delete Facebook but would like to protect their privacy. </span>  
<h2><b>Is privacy anathema to social media?</b></h2>  
<span style="font-weight: 400;">When it comes to online, the truth is there’s no absolute privacy.</span>  
<span style="font-weight: 400;">Perhaps the big issue with this scandal isn’t privacy, but <em>informed</em> consent. </span>Users don't normally read terms and conditions upon signing up to a new service, giving companies the opportunity to exploit data.  
<span style="font-weight: 400;">One rule of the GDPR is that the onus is on companies to have privacy-by-design built in from the start. Systems should be designed with the purpose of protecting information for users, such as explicit consent and greater clarity on the use of data, not to solely support the interests of businesses. </span>  
<span style="font-weight: 400;">Perhaps at the heart of the privacy debate isn't about keeping information secure, but who gets to control information. </span>  
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<p>Incorporate a short timeline with these events:</p>  
<ul>  
<li>2004 &#8211; Facebook launches as The Facebook, a campus social network. Mark Zuckerberg makes his &#8220;dumb fucks&#8221; comment.</li>  
<li>2006 – Harvard researchers working on a psychology project use information from profiles of users without asking their permission (see <em>Harvard’s Privacy Meltdown</em>)</li>  
<li>2011 – Facebook opens information to app developers</li>  
<li>2011 &#8211; Facebook comes to agreement with US Federal Trade Commission over its misbehavior in creating an impression of privacy which did not exist <a href="https://www.ftc.gov/news-events/press-releases/2011/11/facebook-settles-ftc-charges-it-deceived-consumers-failing-keep">https://www.ftc.gov/news-events/press-releases/2011/11/facebook-settles-ftc-charges-it-deceived-consumers-failing-keep</a></li>  
  <p><em><a href="https://s3-eu-west-1.amazonaws.com/wikitribune-uploads-master/2018/04/17205122/Brent-at-the-OII.pdf">Transcript with Brent Mittelstadt at the Oxford Internet Institute</a></em></p>
<li>2014 &#8211; Psychological experiment to do with people&#8217;s <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2014/jun/29/facebook-users-emotions-news-feeds">mood after being shown negative news</a> stories carried out</li> <p><em><a href="https://s3-eu-west-1.amazonaws.com/wikitribune-uploads-master/2018/04/17205241/Jorg-Pohle.pdf">Unedited transcript with Jorg Pohle at the Humboldt Institute for Internet and Society </a></em></p>
<li>2018- (January) Facebook announces new &#8220;<a href="https://www.reuters.com/article/us-facebook-sandberg-privacy/facebook-to-hand-privacy-controls-to-users-ahead-of-eu-law-idUSKBN1FC1Q6">privacy cente</a>r&#8221; on the site which it says will make protecting privacy easier by putting all the settings in one place</li>  
<li>2018- Cambridge Analytica scandal breaks in March.</li>  
</ul>  
<p>&nbsp;</p>  
<p><em>Thinking if i should include this</em></p>  
<p>&nbsp;</p>  
<h2><b>A breakdown on how Facebook uses your privacy data</b></h2>  
<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">When you sign up to Facebook, you willingly share your information, from your email, phone number, locations and friends. </span></p>  
<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Upon signing up, a tracking cookie is inserted into your web browser to collect data you share on or offline. Facebook then sells this data to advertising companies to target relevant ads to you. </span></p>  
<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Facebook can take information about you without you explicitly giving it. For example, it can recognize you or your friends from pictures uploaded on the platform or elsewhere on the web.</span></p>  
<p>The company also intends to merge <a href="https://www.facebook.com/business/help/1782327938668950">&#8220;offline&#8221; data</a> – such as tracking when transactions occur in physical business space – with its online database.</p>  
<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">If Facebook has little information of you, it will target your friends. Ads will pop up for you based on what your friends have liked. If you&#8217;re not on Facebook, it creates &#8220;shadow profiles&#8221; of you which it inferred from data provides by your friends or elsewhere. </span></p>  
<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Basically, your private information is all over the web and this technique isn’t unique to Facebook.</span></p>  
<p>&nbsp;</p>  
<p>&nbsp;</p>  
<p>steps to take</p>  
<p>&nbsp;</p>  
<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Steps can be taken, however, to make your data more secure. Deleting your account is a solution to protecting your data from Facebook, but not data as a whole. If you don’t want to delete, then tweaking your account settings, </span><a href="https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2018/03/how-change-your-facebook-settings-opt-out-platform-api-sharing"><span style="font-weight: 400;">such as </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">how to opt-out of platform API sharing</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">, might be best. </span></p>  
<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Beyond Facebook, </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">to prevent your browser from storing data, you can go “incognito” or “private-mode”. You can also install third party softwares, such as Ghostery, which block any tracking on the web. </span></p>  
<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Another more expensive option is to install a Virtual Private Network (VPN), which creates a virtual encrypted ‘tunnel’ between your computer and the VPN server. No one can see what you’re doing while your traffic is in this tunnel.</span></p>  

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