"cambridge analytica"

Facebook execs are worried that Zuck's emails show he never took his FTC privacy obligations seriously

In 2012, Facebook settled an FTC privacy investigation by promising a host of privacy protections (that they never delivered on); now, the FTC is probing Facebook's noncompliance and they've demanded that the company let them look at Zuck's email, which prompted the company's legal team to have a look therein, and they really didn't like what they saw. Read the rest

68% of "ordinary Facebook investors" voted to fire Zuckerberg

Every year, activist investors try to get Mark Zuckerberg to resign for the good of the company, citing his incompetent handling of the company's endless string of privacy scandals and his inability to steer the business towards a scandal-free, sustainable future: in 2018, 51% of the company's "ordinary investors" (shareholders apart from Zuck, his board and his employees) voted to fire Zuckerberg; this year, the bloc calling for his resignation represented $3B in Facebook investments. Read the rest

FTC asks Congress to create national privacy law to regulate big tech's use of personal data

Members of the United States Federal Trade Commission (FCC) on Wednesday asked Congress to create a national privacy law that would regulate how technology giants like Facebook and Google gather, store, and share the personal data of users. Read the rest

Facebook never delivered its "Clear History" feature

A year ago, Facebook -- wracked by the Cambridge Analytica scandal (and many, many others) -- promised a "Clear History" feature that would allow its users to wipe clean the nonconsensual dossiers that the company had compiled on them, a promise uttered by Mark Zuckerberg himself during the F8 developer conference. Read the rest

Facebook expects up to $5 billion FTC fine over privacy

$5 billion is about one month's revenue for Facebook.

Facebook says it never sells your data but these internal documents show exactly how much they value your data in dollars

Mark Zuckerberg leveraged Facebook user data—maybe yours?—to crush rivals and aid allies, leaked documents show.

Facebook's '15 months of Fresh Hell' detailed deliciously by WIRED

'Scandals. Backstabbing. Resignations. Record profits. Time Bombs. In early 2018, Mark Zuckerberg set out to fix Facebook.'

Welp. That didn't work.

The May issue cover story of WIRED Magazine is a 12,000-word rip-snorting takedown of Facebook. Read the rest

Secret emails show Facebook knew about Cambridge Analytica earlier than they've said, DC AG claims

“The general public itself has little or no interest in this Document that could warrant exposing Facebook to the risks that would inevitably accompany disclosure.” — Facebook

There is a federal criminal investigation into Facebook's data-sharing deals

The Eastern District of New York empaneled a Grand Jury into the dirty data dealings of Facebook.

Zuckerberg announces a comprehensive plan for a new, privacy-focused Facebook, but fails to mention data sharing and ad targeting

Mark Zuckerberg's 3,000 word blog post about his plan to create a parallel set of Facebook services that contain long-overdue privacy protections has plenty to please both the regulators who are increasingly ready to fine the company billions and possibly even break it up, but also privacy advocates who will rightly cheer the announcement that the service will be increasing its end-to-end encryption offerings, only storing data in countries with good track records on human rights and the rule of law, and allowing users to mark some of their conversations as ephemeral, designed to be permanently deleted after a short while. Read the rest

Facebook forces you to expose your phone number to the whole world in order to turn on two-factor authentication

Last September, Facebook drew fire for abusing the phone numbers users provided for two-factor authentication messages, sending spam advertising messages over the same channel -- now, rather than reforming its ways, Facebook has doubled down on poisoning the security well, by adding a no-opt-out policy of allowing anyone in the world to search for you by phone number if you provide that number for two-factor auth. Read the rest

Facebook and FTC negotiating multi-BILLION dollar fine over privacy violations

Facebook is expected to be slapped with the largest fine the FCC has ever imposed on a tech company, but the exact dollar amount is yet to be determined.

Amazon is using purchase data to sell targeted ads, which is creepy, but not because they've invented a mind-control ray

Amazon is building out its ad-targeting program to allow for ad-buys like "people near a physiotherapist's office who've bought a knee-brace," and reports that the ads are incredibly successful. Read the rest

Gates tells Mueller of Trump campaign deal with Israel's Psy-Group for 2016 "social media manipulation"

[PHOTO: Psy Group's headquarters in Israel, via]

Former Donald Trump presidential campaign aide Rick Gates is cooperating with Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s probe, and has provided info on a firm in the Middle East that is reported to have worked with the Trump campaign to influence the 2016 U.S. election. Read the rest

Cambridge Analytica pleads guilty, faces the first in a probable series of criminal convictions

EU privacy rules force European companies to surrender data they hold on anyone, anywhere; and that includes SCL Elections, which owned Cambridge Analytica, the notorious Facebook data-miner and election-manipulator that extravagantly claimed to have won the election for Donald Trump. Read the rest

A timeline of all of Facebook's scandals in 2018

This list of terrible things Facebook did in 2018 (not including the terrible things it did without getting caught) makes it clear that Facebook is a garbage company.

March 29

BuzzFeed News published an internal memo from Facebook executive Andrew Bosworth in which one of Zuckerberg’s most trusted lieutenants calls any effort to connect the world a “de facto good.” “Maybe it costs a life by exposing someone to bullies,” he wrote in June 2016. “Maybe someone dies in a terrorist attack coordinated on our tools... And still we connect people.” The note caused a backlash externally in light of troubling events, including Facebook’s role in abetting genocide in Myanmar and its role in broadcasting a spate of suicides and murders on its livestreaming tool. In a statement, Zuckerberg disputed the idea that Bosworth was speaking for the company and said, “We've never believed the ends justify the means.” In response to the story, Bosworth tweeted (and later deleted), “I don’t agree with the post today and I didn’t agree with it even when I wrote it.”

Image collage created from photos by JD Lasica (Attribution 2.0 Generic, CC BY 2.0) and Shutterstock/Mr.anaked Read the rest

Calculating Facebook's value by figuring out how much you'd have to pay users to quit

A group of academics from economics, business, and policy schools at Kenyon, MSU, Susquehanna and Tufts performed a series of ingenious experiments to determine how much typical Facebook users value the service, by getting experimental subjects to participate in sealed-bid auctions for payments in exchange for quitting the service. Read the rest

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