Daily Column – 6th October 2021

Frances Haugen, the whistleblower of Facebook was testified in front of a panel of Senate yesterday for providing a close look at the various range of practices of the company. While the hearing was going on, Frances Haugen claimed that Facebook had harm children as well as weakened the democracy, a lot of times inspire of having internal knowledge about the problems. She has pushed Congress of undertaking critical observation of the policies of the company, particularly linked with hate speech, misinformation and underage accounts.

The thirty-seven years old ex-employee of Facebook has leaked out thousands of Facebook’s internal documents to the press and the financial regulators. The allegations made by Frances Haugen, the former Facebook employee range from Facebook’s knowledge of Instagram being harmful to the mental health of children to revealing a moderation system of two-tiers for the favoured users.

Haugen’s testimony had come after a last week’s hearing when Antigone Davis, the Global Head of Safety of Facebook was interrogated about Facebook’s negative impact on kids. Davis had stuck to the scripts of the company and left the senators frustrated for not answering the questions directly. However, Frances Haugen the former Product Manager at Facebook was more direct and forthcoming with the information.

Haugen, an algorithm specialist has served various companies as a Product Manager like Yelp, Google & Pinterest. While working at Facebook, Haugen had addressed issues linked to counter espionage, misinformation and democracy.

As per the opening statement of Haugen, she said, “Having worked on four different types of social networks, I understand how complex and nuanced these problems are,” she further said, “However, the choices being made inside Facebook are disastrous – for our children, for public safety, for our privacy and our democracy- and that is why we must demand Facebook make changes.”

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