In wake of Counter-espionage whistleblower revelations Facebook services are down and their stocks are tanking.
Frances Haugen, a former product manager, hired to help defend against election interference on Facebook, said she saw the company’s lack of transparency regarding the social media’s platforms’ potential for harm and unwillingness to address its flaws. Frances Haugen is scheduled to testify before Congress on October 5th, 2021. She has sought federal whistleblower protection with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Frances Haugen holds a degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Olin College and a MBA from Harvard. She is a specialist in algorithmic product management, having worked on ranking algorithms at Google, Pinterest, Yelp and Facebook. She was recruited to Facebook to be the lead Product Manager on the Civic Misinformation team, which dealt with issues related to democracy and misinformation, and later also worked on counter-espionage.”(“Frances Haugen Personal Website,” 2021)
According to Frances Hauge, Facebook prematurely turned off safeguards designed to thwart misinformation and rabble-rousing after Joe Biden defeated Donald Trump in last year’s presidential election in a moneymaking move; she also alleges these actions on Facebook took contributed to the deadly Jan. 6 invasion of the U.S. Capitol.
During an exclusive interview, the whistleblower asserted that a 2018 change to the content flow in Facebook’s news feeds contributed to more divisiveness and ill will in a network ostensibly created to bring people closer together during an exclusive interview that aired Sunday on CBS’s “60 Minutes”(“Associated Press,” 2021)
Edward Snowden: the whistleblower behind the NSA surveillance revelations tweeted October 4th, 2021 that “Facebook and Instagram go Mysteriously offline and, for one shining day, the world becomes a healthier place. According to a study conducted by Holly Shakya, assistant professor at UC San Diego, and Yale professor Nicholas Christakis Edward Snowden is not incorrect.
Holly Shakya, assistant professor at UC San Diego, and Yale professor Nicholas Christakis spent two years following 5,208 adults who are part of a Gallup long-term study. After asking permission, they monitored these subjects’ Facebook use directly from Facebook, rather than asking subjects to report their own use. (People often don’t realize how much time they spend on the social network.) And they checked in with subjects on their emotional and physical well-being, as well as their body-mass index (BMI), three times over the course of two years.
“Overall, our results showed that, while real-world social networks were positively associated with overall well-being, the use of Facebook was negatively associated with overall well-being,” the researchers wrote in a Harvard Business Review article. “These results were particularly strong for mental health; most measures of Facebook use in one year predicted a decrease in mental health in a later year.” Yikes. (Zetlin, 2019)