Facebook responds to damning criticism from former executive

By midian182 ยท 10 replies
Dec 13, 2017
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  1. Facebook has issued a response to comments made by a former executive who said the platform and other social networks “are destroying how society works.” Mark Zuckerberg’s firm didn’t deny Chamath Palihapitiya’s claims, but stressed that it “was a very different company” when he worked there.

    Speaking at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business last month, the one-time vice president of user growth at Facebook said he felt “tremendous guilt” for his role in helping the site become what it is today. He added that the company’s early employees “kind of knew” what they were building could be abused but they ignored their instincts.

    “The short-term, dopamine-driven feedback loops that we have created are destroying how society works. No civil discourse. No cooperation. Misinformation. Mistruth,” said Palihapitiya.

    Instead of refuting the statement, Facebook is highlighting the fact that Palihapitiya hasn’t worked at the company for over six years. “When Chamath was at Facebook we were focused on building new social media experiences and growing Facebook around the world. Facebook was a very different company back then and as we have grown we have realized how our responsibilities have grown too,” said the company.

    Palihapitiya did backtrack slightly in an interview with CNBC yesterday. He explained that his comments were directed at social media in general, rather than being an attack on just Facebook. "What I was talking about was the question was what do you think the long-term effects of social media in general are? Unfortunately, what happened was, I think it's easy to characterize what I said just as a Facebook-specific thing because I worked there," he said.

    But Palihapitiya isn’t the only former Facebook executive to criticize the company. Sean Parker, the firm's first president, warned of the detrimental effect social media has on society and how it exploits vulnerabilities in human psychology. “God only knows what it’s doing to our children’s brains,” added the Napster co-founder.

    Unsurprisingly, people aren’t too pleased with Facebook’s 'we used to be bad, but not anymore, honest,' response.

    Here is Facebook’s full statement.

    Chamath has not been at Facebook for over six years. When Chamath was at Facebook we were focused on building new social media experiences and growing Facebook around the world. Facebook was a very different company back then and as we have grown we have realized how our responsibilities have grown too. We take our role very seriously and we are working hard to improve. We’ve done a lot of work and research with outside experts and academics to understand the effects of our service on well-being, and we’re using it to inform our product development. We are also making significant investments more in people, technology, and processes, and — as Mark Zuckerberg said on the last earnings call — we are willing to reduce our profitability to make sure the right investments are made.

    Permalink to story.

  2. amstech

    amstech IT Overlord Posts: 1,951   +1,119

    If anything it's gotten worse.
    My lady has an iPhone and she has NEVER EVER NOT ONCE used my big rig and I have never once used her phone. Ad's will show up on her feed of vehicles I am looking at on Autotrader. It's super creepy and invasive.
    Reehahs likes this.
  3. Uncle Al

    Uncle Al TS Evangelist Posts: 4,164   +2,637

    I would have to agree. Facebook has done little to improve except what improves their bottom line. While I am not in favor of federal regulations I'm afraid that is the only way to reel them in and put them under somebody like the FTC .... I would have suggested FCC but that ***** over there would find a way to make it worse!
    Charles Olson and Reehahs like this.
  4. wiyosaya

    wiyosaya TS Evangelist Posts: 2,847   +1,393

    IMO, Fakebook is not going to admit to having created a platform that is like an addictive drug simply because it would hurt their bottom line. No way, never!

    Fakebook is yet another pusher on the street with the exception that there are no regulations against it. This is the aspect of the platform that I find hideous, and I have to agree with Chamath.
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2017
    Charles Olson likes this.
  5. TsVkK

    TsVkK TS Member

    If Facebook really cared about society and the way the site influences people's psychology they would remove the "like" function from posts. Half of the problem would instantly be removed... but no, they are expanding on this and adding more emojis and similar to it.
    They know what it does to people's brains. The don't care. Digital crack dealers.
    Charles Olson, Misagt and wiyosaya like this.
  6. wiyosaya

    wiyosaya TS Evangelist Posts: 2,847   +1,393

    My bet is that this is what they are "improving".
  7. senketsu

    senketsu TS Guru Posts: 648   +420

    When I read that Facebook full statement I can't even begin to come up with a rebuttal it gives me such a headache. Maybe if I stopped beating my head on the keyboard, saying NO, NO, NO that might help.
  8. Potato Judge

    Potato Judge TS Booster Posts: 141   +63

    Technology is evil, is why... NO wait, humans are evil. lol.
    Charles Olson likes this.
  9. Joe Blow

    Joe Blow TS Addict Posts: 216   +74

    FB is nothing more than a government operation to violate the 1st, 4th and 5th Amendments.
  10. commanderasus

    commanderasus TS Addict Posts: 223   +95

    Facebook has never been about people. It has been about Mark. Just watch the movie The Social Network. Harvard student Mark Zuckerberg creates the social networking site that would become known as Facebook, but is later sued by two brothers who claimed he stole their idea, and the co-founder who was later squeezed out of the business. The original site posted pictures of girls where other students could "rank" them and make comments. it was called Facemash. Explain to me how you become a billionaire from a social media site? Watch the movie, it is well done. Mark Zuckerberg, has said his feelings were hurt by Hollywood's portrayal of him in The Social Network. What a cry baby.
  11. wizardB

    wizardB TS Booster Posts: 126   +26

    The secret is get rid of facebook you don't need it.

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