Mark Zuckerberg doesn’t think ‘a meaningful number of people’ #DeleteFacebook

The Cambridge Analytica story broke late on Sunday. A whistle blower who worked for CA, Christopher Wylie, spoke to The Guardian about his role in the data mining firm, which was hired by the Trump campaign. This gist is that a private company used Facebook user data to create profiles of almost everyone on Facebook using an exploit in the app data sharing feature. In turn CA served up targeted ads and fake news that surely influenced the 2016 election. CA has deep ties to Russia. Facebook knew that CA was abusing their platform back in 2015. The Federal Trade Commission has opened an investigation into Facebook.

Yesterday, three days after this story broke and after Facebook stock plummeted, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg did interviews, including with CNN, The NY Times and Wired. He also issued a statement about how Facebook will address this. It comes across as too little too late and is focused more on internal processes rather than the massive implications of this. Apparently Facebook created more restrictive data use guidelines in 2014 and believed CA when they claimed to be in compliance. They also blocked CA from Facebook. Zuckerberg promises a data audit of app access along with more restrictions moving forward, but Facebook first has to deal with the government. He also promises that they’re cracking down on fake accounts and fake news.

In his interviews, Zuckerberg says the right things and is clearly trying, but he doesn’t seem to grasp the massive betrayal many users feel. He also downplays the #deletefacebook campaign. Rather than excerpt from all the many weak points he makes, I’ll let you follow the links above and am going to include this single quote.

Roose: Are you worried about the #DeleteFacebook campaign that’s been going around? Have you seen meaningful numbers of people deleting their accounts, and are you worried that will be a trend?
Zuckerberg: I don’t think we’ve seen a meaningful number of people act on that, but, you know, it’s not good. I think it’s a clear signal that this is a major trust issue for people, and I understand that. And whether people delete their app over it or just don’t feel good about using Facebook, that’s a big issue that I think we have a responsibility to rectify.

[From The NY Times]

It’s worth noting that Facebook and Instagram, which was bought by Facebook in 2012, have suspended whistleblower Wylie’s accounts. That speaks volumes about their commitment to transparency and to their users. As far as I can find, Zuckerberg has not mentioned Wylie’s name in his interviews or statements.

Earlier this week I disabled my personal Facebook account.

Here’s Zuckerberg’s CNN interview:

Mark Zuckerberg during an appearance on CNN's 'Anderson Cooper 360°'

Mark Zuckerberg during an appearance on CNN's 'Anderson Cooper 360°'

Mark Zuckerberg during an appearance on CNN's 'Anderson Cooper 360°'

photos credit: WENN and screenshots from YouTube

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

136 Responses to “Mark Zuckerberg doesn’t think ‘a meaningful number of people’ #DeleteFacebook”

Comments are Closed

We close comments on older posts to fight comment spam.

  1. dodgy says:

    Hopefully this puts paid to him wanting to run for POTUS? I hope?

    • Carrie says:

      I hope so, too. I think that he observed this Presidential election to see how he could further influence public opinion when he ran for President.

    • Saras says:

      I am a gen x-er who was weaned on dystopian novels and warned of cults / big brother/ technological overlords my whole life. I never participated in Facebook or Twitter because of the knowledge that this would absolutely happen eventually. Here we are with the realization that we live in a giant psy/ spy op all the time. Remember this: everything is designed to separate you from your money and control your behavior. EVERYTHING! So now is time to realize we are a 100 year crop to be exploited by the world’s richest people for maximum profit and misery. Be more self sufficient and think about who gets your money before you part with it!

      • SNAP says:

        This! ^^^^^ i think it’s time for facebook to go the myspace way: down the drain. After facebook i got so sick of all the new social media platforms! It is, to me, an obscene waste of time. The only app that i used to stay connected to my family abroad was whatsapp. Now that ATT prepaid has the unlimited $60 plan with international call/texts included at no extra charge and independant from needing wifi, i don’t even need whatsapp. I hope as a society we outgrow the wasteland of social media and focus more on face to face interactions or more hands on activities. Since i weaned myself off facebook i actually was able to carve out time to go to the gym…and do more things with my hubby. He gave it up a lot sooner than i did…#DeleteFacebook …time to detox!

      • Rumi says:

        I actually used it as a communication tool. But got tired it pretty quick, the cute baby pics, food pics, duck selfies, pokes, banal posts and updates from family and friends just was way too much. Then I get a message from Facebook to verify my Facebook name is Infact me and to to upload two pieces of identification, prefably with my a picture m it ( apassport and driver’s license) to prove it was my actual name. Well I didn’t use my actual name and I was not going to send in such sensitive information.
        I deleted it.
        I do use WhatsApp and am thinking of deleting that too.

      • Elva says:

        Rumi, in all likelihood, that “message from Facebook” was a scam. Someone asking for 2 forms of ID, especially one with a picture, isn’t just confirming your name, they’re trying to use your info to sign up for credit cards, etc. There was some mild uproar over Facebook no longer allowing pseudonyms that weren’t “real” names (ex: Sarah Sunshine), but that didn’t really stick because some people have unusual names from birth, haha.

  2. Carrie says:

    This person did. And I don’t miss it and won’t go back.

    • Imqrious2 says:

      I also completely deleted it.

      Celebitchy, are you aware that if you just disabled, your info in there is still available?

    • FLORC says:

      The deletion process is tricky. And isn’t immediate. If you do manage to get there it’s a 14 day Grace period hoping you change your mind. Otherwise you’ve only deactivated it.

      I deleted over a decade ago. I don’t regret it.

      P.s. I never corrected my gender was listed as male. And now on so many info websites you’d get for looking someone’s past addresses, full name, etc I’m listed as male. So, this have been going on for ages.

      • Sabrine says:

        I signed up initially to Facebook several years ago but it wasn’t long before I felt it was too invasive in my life and had a stranglehold on me. I tried to delete it and couldn’t. Thankfully, my son was able to get me out of it and I’ve been thankful ever since to be rid of it. I know nothing about any connection to Trump.

      • Fergus says:

        I don’t think deleting actually works. I opened a FB account back in 2009. Didn’t add any friends. Deleted it about a week later. And I STILL get emails asking me to add friends. 8 years later. I deleted, not disabled. I didn’t log in again ever. It’s not deleted. So I’m wondering if it’s actually impossible to delete.

      • FLORC says:

        Facebook banks on no one knowing how to delete. There’s a few turorials. Wired mag has a good 1. The jist is you get to deletion and not just pages recommending deactivation. Then you have an option where it says “let is know” why you want to delete. And THAT is how you delete. With a 2 week grace period and numerous emails on what your friends, family, and area are up to.

    • Lela says:

      I did as well, Instagram too and I never had snapchat. I’m a 20-something year old with no social media!

      • Sabrine says:

        My son is very good on computers. He didn’t just delete my Facebook. He disabled it completely. They don’t make it easy obviously but he knew how to get it done. I never got one e-mail from them afterwards.

    • Erinn says:

      The thing is though – people need to pay MUCH more attention to what they’re giving permissions to. There technically wasn’t a breach of data. There was a huge breach of trust. There was a lack of regulating/needed crackdowns.

      Yahoo had a HUGE data breach affecting 3 BILLION people between 2013 and 2014. Real names, email addresses, dates of birth and telephone numbers of 500 million users. The company said the “vast majority” of the passwords involved had been hashed using the robust bcrypt algorithm”.

      Ebay had a huge breach in 2014. 145 million users.

      Equifax in July 2017 – Personal information (including Social Security Numbers, birth dates, addresses, and in some cases drivers’ license numbers) of 143 million consumers; 209,000 consumers also had their credit card data exposed.

      Target stores in Dec. 2013 – Credit/debit card information and/or contact information of up to 110 million people compromised.

      The Cambridge Analytica situation harvested the data of around an estimated 50 million people.

      Whenever you’re downloading an app from the app store, or signing up for services you NEED to be aware of what you’re giving permissions to. Hell, I downloaded a game on my phone the other day – I had to give permissions to multiple different things just to play the game. But people don’t take it seriously.

      And it’s kind of the popular thing to hate on facebook. There’s a lot of sensationalizing in the media of how horrible it is – people enjoy hating Zuckerberg. But I’ve seen so many quizes on facebook of “what dog are you” or “how many kids will you have” that are just DUMB quizes – but people willingly consent to allowing these things to have access to their personal information. They aren’t FACEBOOKS quizes. They’re people sharing 3rd party apps/websites. But people just click through and go ahead with it.

      Is it a good idea to put a ton of personal information on facebook? No. And I think most people know that. But they do it anyway – and when things go wrong nobody really wants to take responsibility for what THEY have done in the lead up to the bad thing. If I’m linking my address and phone number to accounts – I need to be aware that ALL businesses are vulnerable in some form or another. My internet is through Bell Canada. They had a recent breach as well – a lot of customers had personal information stolen. Anytime you use your debit card or credit card – there’s a certain amount of risk attached to it. With social media – you CAN limit the information available at least to a degree.

      But if you’re scared about what kind of information can be harvested from websites like facebook – just know that it is by no means the only one. Google Chrome, Google Plus, Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail, etc. They all are just as vulnerable as the next. Your ISP is vulnerable. The place where you order clothes or kitchen appliances from is vulnerable.

      • SNAP says:

        Right on! ^^^

      • Belle Epoch says:

        👏👏👏 Great summary!

        I’m so cynical I have NOT deleted my Facebook account. They already know everything about me and always will. Every time I go online there is evidence that Someone knows what I just shopped for, where I’ve been online, and so on. A search on turned up family relationships I’d almost forgotten about. Another search somewhere turned up an old landlord! Facebook has been in bed with the CIA for years and there is undoubtedly a complete profile of EVERYTHING from the credit companies to the games I play. None of this can ever be deleted, and going forward, unseen data miners will keep following me. As a “shut-in” I really need Facebook to keep in touch with other human beings. I’m staying, but warily.

      • Eleonor says:

        For exemple the FB message I receive all the time: “we are implementing our security, insert your phone number”. HELL NO.
        You will not have my phone number.
        As I have always been cautios about my photos: why don’t you show your family, your boyfriend etc.etc. because that is my life and I don’t want to share every details of it.
        I stopped taking those stupid tests years ago. I use different email accounts, and I am extremely cautios with phone apps too.

      • India Rose says:

        Thanks, Erinn. My biggest concern is false advertising designed to mislead American voters. I stay informed using legitimate news sources and journalists. As a bleeding-heart, tree-hugging liberal, I’m suspicious of all extreme sources and try not to spread false information.

        I was ready to shut down all my accounts after watching the Oscar-winning documentary about Edward Snowden. But as a person who doesn’t like talking on the phone and is at risk of being too isolated at home, I use Facebook to stay up-to-date on my friends’ & extended family’s lives. I wouldn’t know about the death of a high school friend’s parent or a childhood friend’s cancer diagnosis. I wouldn’t see pictures of a classmate’s new baby or annual kids’ back-to-school pictures. I wouldn’t read the beautiful poems my alma mater shares or know the details of a Marching For Our Lives protest.

        There are so many ways for corporations and governments to access our information. I don’t want to give up staying in touch with friends and acquaintances across the globe out of fear. FB is the best way I know how to stay in touch.

        Kudos to those who can and have deleted their accounts. I’m not there yet, but maybe some day.

    • efffefff says:

      I also completely deleted facebook and instagram (never got into twitter) about a month ago, and I have been significantly happier in an overall way. It took about a week to get used to not scrolling my feeds anymore, but now I don’t miss it.

  3. lightpurple says:

    I’ve seen very few people delete their Facebook accounts. The ones who did were the very people who were pushing Trump.

    • LadyMTL says:

      No-one I know personally has deleted their FB account either, though most of us rarely use it these days (if I log in at all, it’s just to make sure that I’m not forgetting someone’s birthday, lol).

      That said, I think FB needs to take a very hard look at itself and its practices, and it will probably be a long time before they return from this mess, but at the same time I doubt very much that seeing a few hundred or thousand people closing their accounts will have much of a long-term impact. They have close to a billion users, after all.

      • Ex-Mel says:

        @LadyMTL – I am not trying to be unpleasant, so I apologise if it comes across the wrong way, but surely those people whose birthdays you don’t remember without techno-help don’t mean much to you? Why “celebrate” their birthdays, then?

      • LadyMTL says:

        No worries, I’m not offended! :) In my case, I actually have a few people in my life who do mean a lot to me but who don’t live nearby (a stepbro lives in Dubai, for example, one of my oldest friends now lives on the opposite coast, etc). One way we wish one another happy birthday is via FB, along with – sometimes – a birthday card in the mail.

        I obviously don’t do this for random friends who I haven’t spoken to in 15 years, but sometimes it does come in handy.

    • Imqrious2 says:

      Lightpurple, you’re wrong in that respect. I, and everyone I know that’s deleted, are VERY anti-Trump. In fact, you won’t anyone more ultra-liberal than my sister and BIL, and he was one of the first out there to delete. For me, I can’t knowingly support a company that will sell out that way. And yes, I know most companies put profit before anything. Sigh, I don’t know, it just feels so different knowing how traitorous this administration is. I want FB to feel it in the only place where it counts to them: the wallet.

      • gnerd says:

        Yup. I’m a liberal and I deleted my Facebook a couple of weeks after the election when Zuckerberg denied that FB was used to push propaganda and fake news.

        Do I get to be a hipster now because I deleted before it was cool? ;)

      • lightpurple says:

        Imgrious2, I was referring to my own personal experience with the people I have personally seen use Facebook. That’s why I used the phrase “I’ve seen.” My liberal friends and family members are still using it and posting about how they all plan to march Saturday against gun violence. The people that I have personally seen from my FRIENDS list who have left FB in response to this are the extreme Trumpets. I am not wrong in discussing my personal observations as to what is happening on my own FB page. I don’t see what you’re doing or not doing on your FB account.

        @gnerd, you are free to be a hipster if you wish to be a hipster.

    • Astrid says:

      I deleted in late 2015 because of the election shenanigans and I’m NOT a drumpf support

    • Wren says:

      I haven’t seen any either. I won’t anytime soon because I belong to a couple educational groups that I’m currently learning quite a lot from, so it’s useful to me. I don’t post much on my own page though. The occasional picture perhaps, usually of nature or my animals, but I’ve moved away from posting truly personal stuff. Nothing I post about couldn’t be gleaned from tracking my google searches or websites I visit. If I deleted my page I’d have to pull a ton of pictures off of it from several years ago because FB is currently the only place I have access to them. I think that alone has kept me from deleting my profile until I found my awesome current groups.

      I mean, Facebook is FREE. It’s a huge company. Huge companies don’t sustain themselves on fairy dust and unicorn kisses. What exactly did we all think the product was?

      • Wren, just FYI, you can download all of your photo albums from Facebook into a zip file you can store on your computer. I just did this about a month ago because, like you, that was the one place I had a bunch of them.

  4. Una says:

    I deleted my account years before and I still get Facebook notifications. FB still has my information. Then there are shadow accounts too. Even if you never signed up for FB, they still track down FB users that share your pictures etc. and create a shadow account for you. So deleting FB will not actually delete the data but at least it will hurt them financially.

    • Ninks says:

      I had a facebook account a while back, and deleted it. I manage the social media accounts for the library I work for, using an email address specifically set up just for the social media accounts. Facebook regularly recommends that I friend people that I actually know, people I went to school with and cousins of mine, who I used to follow on my old, long deleted account. I can’t figure out how or why I keep getting these particular recommendations. None of them live in the same jurisdiction or follow the library accounts, there should be no link between the library Facebook page and my friends/family and yet, every time I check, which is at least once a day, it’s recommending a cousin or somebody I went to school with years ago.

      It’s so creepy. I’ll never use facebook again.

      • gnerd says:

        If you ever logged into your personal account from work, they have your IP address and linked the connection that way.

        Or if you used a phone number with the account and your friends have it in their contacts, it can link everything that way, too.

        People don’t realize the massive amount of data and info FB has on you. It even collects and assumes information if you *don’t have an account*!

        Nothing is free. If you are getting any kind of service on the internet for free, trust that you and your information is the actual product the company is selling.

      • Horsforth says:

        It’s also worth remembering that the mobile access has access to all your text messages, data, photos, phone calls and financial info if you have a banking app on your phone as well. I find it truly frightening, and none of Zuckerberg’s humble pie eating addresses this. Apps rely on you not reading the agreements of what you will share with them through using their platform. We are a society addicted to platforms designed to give away our privacy for small dopamine hits.

      • E says:

        The same thing happened to me. I set-up a ‘ghost’ account/email address as I needed to set-up a Facebook group/page for work, and the friend requests were all people I knew- although I only accessed the account at work and never did anything personal on my work computer.

        In regards to my personal account, I joined Facebook back in 2006 when it was invite only/Universities only, but as soon as I could see that things were changing I left in 2007.
        It amazes me that people are surprised by these breaches. Zuckerberg clearly has no respect for privacy and sees us for the sheep that we are.

      • Megan says:

        I never have any expectation of privacy from a free service, and, increasingly, I have no expectation of privacy from the platforms I pay for. For example, the Washington Post has a robust sideline in big data.

      • Belle Epoch says:

        Remember in the beginning when Zuckerberg referred to people signing on as “dumb f*cks”?

        Of course, he has been unveiled as a dumb f*ck himself.

      • brutalethyl says:

        A couple of days ago on Reddit, somebody asked the question “what’s the creepiest person Facebook ever recommended to be your friend?” It’s full of stories just like yours.

        I’m glad I deleted my FB account probably 10 years ago. I have one now, but it’s a fake just because some companies have made FB the only way to contact them or get information. It’s really annoying and to me, a stupid business practice. Hopefully they’ll realize that now and make websites.

  5. Shelley says:

    I gave up FB a few years ago. I just got nervous about all the oversharing from random people. Some of the language and thoughts could be misinterpreted and applied to me. I was warned by my boss during the interview that my prospective employer checked FB before any hiring decisions are made. Even scarier according to Daily Mail is the apps in FB also scavenge and collect additional information that folks don’t know that they consented to provide. I personally think we need privacy and consumer laws like EC. FB should not be considered as not providing a service which allows them to get around so many rules. I also think MZ is Rich but obnoxious and ignorant about the potential impact of poorly regulated business on politics and privacy.

    • Ex-Mel says:

      “I also think MZ is Rich but obnoxious and ignorant about the potential impact of poorly regulated business on politics and privacy. ”

      He is not ignorant of all that at all. He just doesn’t give a damn. Remember, this is the man (and I use the term generously) who called FB users “dumb fucks” for trusting him.

    • Erinn says:

      “I was warned by my boss during the interview that my prospective employer checked FB before any hiring decisions are made.”

      That’s technically illegal in a lot of places, I believe. But I get it. I also don’t post anything I don’t want people seeing, ultimately. Some people completely baffle me with the public-ness of their inane, offensive thoughts.

      • brutalethyl says:

        You don’t have to post anything. If they go to your site and all your friends are talking about how wasted they got at last night’s party and how good the ganja was, and make racial or sexist comments, or post sketchy pictures, you’re not going to get that job. Even if you haven’t posted, the powers-that-be are going to assume that you can tell a person by their friends. If your friends don’t look good to your future employer, neither do you.

    • Dolkite says:

      That was one reason I deleted my FB page; stories were coming out in the media of people losing their jobs over FB statements, even those made before being hired. There’s stuff I want to say to good friends that I don’t need to say to the person who sat next to me in 11th grade physics class.

      That’s the other reason I quit. Almost all my “friends” were people I went to high school with and probably never thought about since. I don’t have anything against them, but I don’t care about their lives, either. It didn’t help that when I was on FB, I was at a financial low point and I’m looking at my high school classmates posing with their Corvette or their wife on their trip to Rome or with their perfect kids at the beach.

  6. Cee says:

    I hardly use Facebook and I’ve deleted almost everything from it (I know they still have that data) and I haven’t published any new content in years. I keep my account because I’m a member of different groups I love. Other than that, FB is a non-entity in my life.

    • Mel M says:

      I do wish I could delete mine. I hardly go on it, and I miss out on a ton of things but that’s another story. It is the only way I can be in connection with people who’s daughters have the same syndrome as mine though so I’m stuck and can never delete it. They have a fb page and nothing else. They used to have an email group but got rid of it and fully switched everything to FB. I hate that I’m stuck with it but I have to for myself and my daughter.

      • Ex-Mel says:

        Mel, why don’t you suggest to them forming a G+ group?
        Everyone with a Gmail account already has a G+ page.

      • Mel M says:

        @Ex-Mel, it was suggested to keep the email group but there was a vote and the admins decided to just keep the fb group and delete the email group. I guess I can see why because it’s a lot easier for new families to find us by just typing in the name of the syndrome and then the page will pop up. An email group ain’t as visible I guess. I mean that’s how I found the group and then I only found out about the email group after some older members mentioned getting rid of it. Beck in the day that’s all they had but technology marches on I guess.

      • brutalethyl says:

        Like I posted above, I have a fake account for businesses that I can only access through FB. You might want to consider doing the same thing.

  7. Darla says:

    I won’t delete mine because I need it for business. It is a huge part of my business. I think he is right that not too many will delete. I asked my mom yesterday, and she won’t delete because she loves seeing pictures of her grandchildren. Sure, they can be texted to her, but she knows she would miss a lot. I think this reaction is going to be pretty common especially for grandparents.

    • Ex-Mel says:

      Why not send them to her via email?

    • Megan says:

      Facebook is an important commuications channel for my charity clients. I hope Facebook can regain the public’s trust. I also hope people really grasp that if a service isn’t charging you to use it, you aren’t the customer, you are the product.

    • magnoliarose says:

      I don’t use personal social media because of a frightening experience, and I learned the hard way that FB is not secure.
      I know a lot of people who haven’t used it for several years and a lot of people who deleted. They resent it helping elect 45, so they dropped IG too.
      Zuckerberg is in deeper than he tries to pretend.
      They also started being the platform for comment sections so they would know right away a lot about someone from their comments and the sites they visit.

      • brutalethyl says:

        One of our local news channels switched to Facebook to post comments on their site. I moved to another channel.

      • I wonder if facebook being the commenting platform for many small sites is why the comment sections for local news are so awful. It feels like the same group of terrible people every time I go to the comment section for small, local sites.

    • Chaine says:

      Same here. I use it for my business and need to maintain an account to continue pushing out content through a channel that’s used by 2 billion people.

      • AnneC says:

        Yes, I’ve seen many people post about how necessary and helpful Facebook is for their business. And that in 3rd world countries the free messenger app is used extensively for communication. I find it a little disingenuous for people to act shocked about data being used on FB when every site you go to is using your data or selling it. It’s the internet, people. Learn about privacy settings or create private groups, stop taking quizzes and don’t mindlessly believe everything you read. Cable news and their constant coverage of trump helped normalize the guy and probably had a lot more to do with getting him elected. Social media is not going away. It’s the future and users and owners need to constantly reassess and make it better. FB has over a billion users, a few 20somethings (who are probably still on instagram, twitter or Snapchat) deleting it aren’t going to make a big difference

  8. Loopy says:

    For someone not so tech savvy can someone explain to me exactly what this CA managed to do and an example of how it could possible influence someone’s vote?

    • Betsy says:

      This woman lays it out nicely. For one thing, they STOLE data and Facebook knew. For a long time. From this data the were able to make shockingly specific and accurate deductions about people and tailor ads to a person. Furthermore, CA was allegedly telling Trump the best messages to inflame the tender passions of his dirtbag MAGAt base – drain the swamp, MAGA, “bleeding from her whatever,” the Mexicans are rapists… all phrases developed by CA starting in 2014.

      Also, nix May have been suspended, but he and Rebekah Mercer have already started a new company.

      • These people just operate above the law, don’t they? It’s unbelievable to me that they can just keep on doing what they’re doing while under investigation by several governments.

        Thanks for the link, Betsy.

    • LAK says:

      It’s a digital form of marketing using your personal likes. In ye old times, you filled out a marketing survey or any survey and soon found yourself being offered products or services you weren’t aware you wanted.

      In essence, FB sold your details / preferences / FB habits to *companies like CA who sold that information to anyone who could use it to target you with product regardless of industry. From bog standard product companies to political campaigns.

      * every app you use automatically records your details, likes, preferences and passes them onto such companies. FB happens to be one of the bigger platform, but google and Amazon do it too.

      In the current political climate, everyone is mad because Trump used CA’s services, and he was successful, but if you look at every single campaign, this sort of thing has been going on forever.

    • cr says:

      My post with links got modded, so I’ll post an excerpt from the site Just Security:
      ..These revelations have provided evidence for a potential plot line perhaps stranger still. Despite its British roots, Cambridge Analytica was deeply tied to the Trump campaign. Was Cambridge Analytica a nexus for collaboration between the Trump campaign and the Russian election interference campaign? No evidence directly supports that theory yet. But what is known supports another theory: that Cambridge Analytica knowingly used Russian disinformation to help the Trump campaign win the 2016 election….

      I’d also go to Lawfare blog and read their posts on CA. It’s not as straightforward as simple data mining.

      Vox has a good summary from earlier this week, as well.

  9. LAK says:

    Why is this a story now? CA first popped up in 2014. In the immediate aftermath of Trump’s election, every profile of Bannon and Jared mentioned CA and how they used FB and social media in general to target voters.

    Profiles like this one that forbes put out on 22 N9vember 2016.

    That said there is a Ted talk by one of Obama’s 2012 digital strategist who says that they mined FB 100% in a similar way and FB said it was OK since FB supported Obama. She’s been tweeting about it since this ‘scandal’ began.

    This isn’t a case of CA doing something new. Just a case of a person disliked by everyone using the same tools as everyone else.

    Btw, CA braggs that they’ve helped over 33 political campaigns around the world so it’s still surprising that anyone is surprised.

    That said, FB doth protest too much. They were making money from allowing this type of data breach for years. There is alot of money to be made from this.

    In Britain, a data protection act was put in place to stop companies selling their clients’ data. FB is in breach of this act and that’s why he is being investigated in Britain.

    • Betsy says:

      The laws changed between Obama’s campaign and Trump’s AND Obama had the permission of its users. Trump and CA stole the data.

    • cr says:

      …One of the big issues with the Cambridge Analytica controversy centers on how the data was collected. According to reports In the New York Times (link is external) and elsewhere, Cambridge solicited personal information through an app with misleading disclosure as to the purpose and intent. The solicited various types of information, some of which seems innocuous, such as college majors and political affiliation, but the app also included personality assessment questions to generate personality profiles. …
      Back in 2008 and 2012 during Obama’s campaign, his team was using publicly available profiles. If you friended Obama on Facebook, you gave him your data and showed him who your friends were. It’s in the fine print. Read it some time. The user-supplied data allowed them to identify likely predispositions toward policy, cross-matched with other available data, like zip codes. ..

    • perplexed says:

      I thought it was because CA or Trump were deliberately spreading fake news rather than just mining the data.

    • anniefannie says:

      @Lak I love celebitchy because there’s a healthy balance of gossip AND important current events but more importantly the people that comment often have an equal grasp and are as informed as the writers! I’ve been meaning to thank my celebitchies and you for eons!!

  10. Esmom says:

    I have come so close to pulling the plug so many times within the last five years but can’t seem to bring myself to do it. It’s really become such a cesspool but the few good things about it — like my “secret” support groups and the sharing of photos between parents on the sports teams my kids are on — keep me on.

    My secret groups are discussing other channels we could use to communicate. People seem really entrenched in their FB habits, though. I’ve never been a big sharer or participant so maybe it’s easier for me to contemplate leaving.

    I think I joined FB in 2009, after resisting for quite a while. Those early days of FB were pretty quaint. But I really miss the days prior to FB when most of my online time was spent on blogs, kind of like this one!

    • leskat says:

      I’m like you- I keep thinking about deleting FB because I don’t have any meaningful interactions on it anymore. I rarely post statuses or pictures, maybe once a month? It’s not serving a fun function like it used to, but I can’t bring myself to delete it. I also have certain groups that are only on FB so I don’t know how we’d all get to be on the same platform to communicate.

    • Wren says:

      Same. Also several of the people in my groups are extremely not tech savvy, so the fact that they even have FB is an accomplishment. Moving to another platform is not a viable option because so many of them would simply refuse to learn something new to be able to use it. I desire their knowledge and input, thus I stay. Besides, it’s not like you’d be tracked any less on another platform. Every single free service does the same thing, you’re not winning by switching. You’re just being tracked by a different entity. It’s the nature of the service.

      • Esmom says:

        One of my group’s moderators writes a blog. I don’t understand why we just can’t talk via the blog’s comment section. That’s what we did before FB. And commenting on a blog doesn’t require revealing any info, does it? We don’t even have to use our real names, like the anonymity we have here. To me that seems like the simplest solution. It’s kinda rudimentary and clunky but maybe it’s enough.

    • Megan says:

      Advice I got in a Persian cat group saved my cat’s life. Members are from all over the world. Facebook is by far the most effective and convenient platform for that kind of forum. I really hope Facebook gets it sh$t together.

  11. AngieB says:

    I have a FB account for joining local info groups but it has no pics nothing other than a made up name and birthdate. I don’t follow or like anything. But I don’t know anyone who is voicing concern or who deleted their account. I feel like people with privacy concerns gave up FB a long time ago.

  12. Lizzie says:

    mark zuckerberg needs to watch jurassic park. “your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn’t stop to think if they should”

    he is so enamored with the success of his platform that he never stops to anticipate the negative aspects of it. facebook is ALWAYS behind the issue and they ALWAYS admit they had the power to stop it but didn’t. it is lazy and arrogant.

    • RedOnTheHead says:

      Lizzie, you nailed it. Zuckerberg is, to me, the epitome of the obnoxious, arrogant douchebro that was driven to succeed regardless of the impact. I have never had a FB account because I always had concerns about privacy. My friends and family ragged on me for years about it but I refused to give in. I did a lot of research and reading about FB privacy practices and was just astounded at what I found out. I couldn’t believe that most of the stuff I was reading was even legal for them to do. Never mind whether it was even a good business practice. It was just so invasive. And people worry about the government spying on you!

      Una had a great comment upthread about just one of the privacy concerns. And there are so many more. My bff was complaining to me recently about all of the ad spam that pops up in her email. When I asked her if she was ever logged into FB while surfing she said yes. I then explained to her how FB tracks your every move in the digital world and why she gets those ads. She’s rather naive about these kinds of things and was horrified. I’m sure there are many, many examples like this.

      I would love to see this twit fully investigated. And if anything illegal is found I would also love to see him go down for it. I just can’t stand him. Primarily I just want to see him punished for abusing people’s trust.

      • Belle Epoch says:

        I’d like to add somewhere that on Friday night he sold over $100 million in FB stock. The CA story broke on Sunday. The stock tanked Monday. He saved MILLIONS. Nice guy.

      • How is that not insider trading for him to sell stock like that? I hope his shareholders sue the crap out of him.

    • AnneC says:

      FYI. Trust me you guys would have hated Steve Jobs, Bill Gates etc too. But this is why he’s selling stock.

      Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg sold $108.6 million in his company’s stock this week, the first step in a previously announced move to increase funding for the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, a company set up with the philanthropic aim of funding improvements in health, education, science and energy. Among its announced initiatives are promoting STEM education in underserved schools and criminal justice reform.

  13. Lindy says:

    I deleted mine the day after Trump was elected. I couldn’t take the insanity circulating on there (and the info about Cambridge Analytica was already out there at the time, in a fabulous Guardian article I’d read). All my family and most of my close friends live far away and I’ve definitely missed the casual, easy connection with them that Facebook made possible. But overall it’s been a very good decision and one I don’t regret.

    • LAK says:

      I read alot of political news and follow so many campaigns worldwide, i remember reading about Cambridge Analytica in 2014.

      …but i remember that guardian article after the Trump election as well as it’s inclusion in all the Bannon/ Jared profiles in November/ December 2016 detailing how they won the election.

      • Lindy says:

        Lak, I think that’s how I found the Guardian article, one of those profiles right after the election. It’s crazy to look back on how much has happened since then. I don’t think I’d have bet on Bannon being out so early on!

    • Darla says:

      I deleted about 70 percent of my fb connections a couple of days after the election. As soon as I was able to get out of bed. Anyone who I didn’t know for a fact was a HIllary voter was gone. Don’t miss them either.

  14. Betsy says:

    When this first became apparent in the Menschosphere months ago, I deleted.

    But I still have an Instagram account for my art.

  15. browniecakes says:

    Back in October former Sen. Al Franken grilled Facebook’s General Council Colin Stretch on why FB wasn’t able to discover foreign election interference when it had sold political ads to accounts that paid in Russian rubles. “Senator, it’s a signal we should have been alert to, and in hindsight it’s one we missed,” Stretch said. American election ads paid for in Russian currency didn’t stop them. FB is out to make money. Period.

  16. PunkyMomma says:

    I disabled my personal account years ago, and still I receive notices when I log on to my business account. If it weren’t for the business side, I’d delete it completely.

    I find Zuckerberg completely disingenuous. During 2016, I received so many friend requests from fake accounts — when I scrolled through those friends list and groups discovered that they were Russian in origin — I reported each one as a fake account to FB. Facebook knew what was going on — if I could see it and report it, they sure as heck did.

    As soon as I can find an alternative platform for my business, I’m leaving FB.

    • Ex-Mel says:

      Why don’t you use G+?
      (Not that I am a fan of Google – shudder – or of social media in general – never had a social media account, never will – but from what I’ve seen, G+ is far more eye-pleasing and seemingly far less dumbed down than FB.)

      • cr says:

        You’d also have to get all your friends/groups, etc. to migrate over to G+.

      • PunkyMomma says:

        Google Plus doesn’t have the audience FB has. Twitter is limited in many ways as well. Right now, FB has me hostage.

      • Ex-Mel says:

        CR – everyone that has a Gmail account already has, by default, a G+ option. It’s just a matter of activating it (one click, unless I am mistaken) and start posting. Then you alert your friends where you are.

        @Punky Momma – I understand, but it is indexed by Google (or used to be).
        The more people use it, the more it will grow.

      • cr says:

        Ex-Mel, it’s not that simple. Not everyone has a GMail account, and even if they do, it’s still going to take work to migrate them over to G+. And the groups, etc.

  17. Ex-Mel says:

    I happen to agree with him. Because all too many people really are “dumb fucks” (M. Zuckerberg).

  18. Maria S says:

    I deleted mine completely a year ago and will never return. I definitely miss my friends who are spread out across the US and Europe, but it forces us to call, write, and actually visit. Lots of group texts too. FB does not deserve our trust or unfettered access to our lives.

  19. perplexed says:

    Everyone has an account, but very few seem to post on it anymore. it’s like this place where everyone gathers, but no one wants to say anything (except maybe old people).

  20. T.Fanty says:

    I don’t mean to be rude, but why would anybody assume that their data was not being harvested and sold? It’s a for-profit organization.

    • NeoCleo says:

      Again, marketing is one thing POLITICAL PROPAGANDA and FAKE NEWS is quite another.

    • jetlagged says:

      I think people realize our info is was being sold or shared with other sites, but we all assumed it was for fairly benign purposes – ie showing us ads for Hawaiian getaways when we had “liked” something about a beach vacation. What came as a bit of a shock (although in retrospect it shouldn’t be) was just how diabolically efficient that sort of data mining had become. When a group with less than honorable intent can create content that effectively targets a very specific demographic that may be no larger than a handful of people – but do it thousands of times over – it becomes very powerful and hard to defend against.

  21. SuzyQ says:

    No. Zuckerberg—He’s not trying. He didn’t apologize. He’s doing as little as he can get away with to cover his ass. He’s an arrogant sleezebag who, I hope, will go down in flames.

    • Ex-Mel says:

      God, I hope so too.
      The sad thing is, no matter how far and hard he falls, his ass will forever be cushioned by the billions he amassed at the expense of his trusting “dumb fucks”.

  22. Rose says:

    Deleted my account in 2016 a week before Trump got in. Have never, not once, regretted it!

  23. Icantremembermyusername says:

    The company’s business model is selling data. Hello? Where have people been? Does everybody think they set up their platform and made a gazillion (literally) dollars for free? Or from internet ad space? 🤣

    • NeoCleo says:

      Influence peddling for purposes of swaying an election IS DEPLORABLE. I don’t care if someone markets to me as long as they’re not shoving FAKE NEWS at me.

  24. aang says:

    What I like about facebook is that looking back over my timeline is like a scrap book. Pics and captions are good memories. I’ve paired it down to very few “friends”, mostly older relatives, and I don’t follow other pages. If I want to see what CNN or NY Times is posting, I have to go to their page. I also lied about my age and other info when I set up my account.

  25. Tan says:

    Somewhere, Madam Karma is lazily enjoying the dose she delivered to this thief who stole the entire FB from his fellow mates in college and denied them their contribution.

    I hope FB takes a massive hit and Zuckerberg is removed

  26. NeoCleo says:

    DELETED DELETED DELETED!!! Zuckerberg go eff yourself. I hope your stock hits rock bottom.

  27. Nicegirl says:

    Not on fb. I actually call it “space case face place”

    Not a fan.

  28. MeowuiRose says:

    Haven’t had a FB since around 2013. Stuff like this is one of the many reason. Super sus!

  29. Shelley says:

    Facebook bought Instagram? No wonder I’m seeing the same very specific ads targeted at me on both. I’m sick of all of the stupid advertising. And now they are introducing “buying” on instagram. That is not why I’m there!!!! I am getting just a little fed up.

    • magnoliarose says:

      I used to Pinterest to curate my favorite things, art, fashion etc. but when they began selling things and all of these random pins advertising things I just deleted it. It wasn’t fun anymore.

  30. Aren says:

    Facebook users are addicted. I don’t mean people who login to check on their friends or relatives, I mean the ones who post several times a day and check notifications within seconds.
    The other day I was reading the comments at Pajiba, and some user actually said that privacy was a modern concept that wasn’t relevant “in the past”.
    Facebook users are like Trump supporters, they’re ready to justify anything in order to keep the illusion that they’re actually being benefited.

    • Esmom says:

      Agreed. I know one woman who posts more about her kids in a week than I have in 10 years. It’s kind of appalling.

      Also appalling is someone saying that privacy isn’t a relevant concept. I know he had help, but this is how we ended up with Trump.

  31. Tiny Martian says:

    I’ve never used Facebook, despite constant pressure from others to do so. I’ve just never had the need, although I can see what a useful tool it can be for networking and advertising. But for my personal life? Nope. And I don’t feel like I’m missing out on a single thing.

  32. Harryg says:

    I was stunned to see how nearly everyone joined Facebook when it started. I always found it really creepy and wanted nothing to do with it.
    But I know that a lot of people were forced to join for work, and so on.

  33. Cate says:

    I am not deleting yet…unfortunately I still have some family members who use FB almost exclusively to communicate. If I send them an email, I might not hear back EVER, but a FB message will get a response within 1-2 days. Since having a kid, I have been trying to push them to other mediums by limiting how many baby pictures I share on FB vs. elsewhere :) Success has been limited.

    That said, I have always been quite selective about what information I choose to share on FB. No work or education history, gave them the wrong birthday, never put in addresses or phone numbers, limited info about geographic location, etc. Back when all those quizzes kept popping up that wanted to access your data, I always declined them. My father worked for many years in IT and had drummed into me pretty thoroughly that you don’t share info with something you don’t 100% know and trust. I have always assumed that any information given to FB would eventually become public and have been circumspect.

    Interestingly, during the 2016 election, I saw very little in the way of political ads on FB.

  34. TyrantDestroyed says:

    My husband and I created our accounts at the time when you could only use your university e-mail so I think it was over a decade ago. My husband didn’t like the social network experience and left a year after. I kept mine and was an avid used because I used it for keeping connecter with my friends from all over the world. To be honest I didn’t like the change it went through the years and started to share less and less until last year that I decided to uinstall it from my phone and nowadays I only use it when I need some information.

  35. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    I am so so pleased to hear so many of you don’t personally engage in FB, etc. anymore. I used to get so much crap for not using my name and lying about all personal info. I remember telling everyone, “One day….” Even back then I tried warning but was lol’d at. I deleted everything five or six years ago. I even got chastised for deleting. You’d have thought I sold everything and moved to the Arctic to hang out with Santa. It’s nice to hear kindred souls lol.

    • Esmom says:

      It is crazy how entrenched people are with FB. My teenage sons are not on it but my older son who is going to college in the fall has been told that a couple of the organizations he wants to join communicate mostly via FB. I hope they rethink that and find another channel before he’s on campus. He really doesn’t want to join FB and I don’t blame him!

    • Beth says:

      I’ve never been on Facebook, but I have friends and family who seem to be addicted to social media and they can’t believe I can live without it. It’s like they forget that we all lived and survived before social media ever existed

  36. Other Renee says:

    I post about once a week and that’s how often I check FB. Except if I get a birthday notification. I don’t see how FB is any worse than the data that is collected to send me targeted ads on my phone on other sites. No disrespect meant, but I get ads lowering from the top of my phone screen (or coming up from the bottom) every time I click on a post in CB. Which I understand. We enjoy this service for free but they’re in business to make money. And rightfully so. It’s annoying but that’s a small price to pay for an enjoyable gossip site.

  37. Nicole says:

    I deactivated a month ago and will most likely delete. Life is better without Facebook.

  38. Veronica says:

    I didn’t delete mine, either, but it’s linked to a lot of family I wouldn’t see otherwise. I’m also not an idiot and can research things that pop on Facebook, so people like me aren’t really the problem.

  39. Girl_ninja says:

    I deleted my FB page several months ago. I’m glad I did.

  40. Belle Epoch says:

    You also have to delete Snapchat, Instagram, Pinterest, game apps…. and “they” will still know about you. It’s impossible to go off the grid unless you are homeless!

  41. Lyla says:

    O never had a real account with Facebook. I’m not against social media, I do have snap, insta, Twitter, Pinterest, etc, but for some reason I’ve always disliked Facebook.

  42. Shappalled says:

    I better start keeping a list, I’m having trouble remembering everybody who cost Hillary Clinton the election.

    I’ve had Facebook accounts in the past but deleted them because I thought they were a waste of time. But it turns out they’re much worse than that.

  43. Sal says:

    This isn’t just an American issue – don’t know why you frame it that way, it actually broke in the UK first and The Houses of Parliament have called him in.

    Always thought he was a sociopath and that ‘The Social Network’ film actually went easy on him – ive never forgotten his early emails where he is boasting to movers and shakers about how much information he could offer them and how ‘dumb’ his customers were.

    Hope he burns.

  44. A.Key says:

    Sure, lets blame everyone and anyone but ourselves for the Trump travesty that has happened…..
    Lets be real people, the results of the election happened because most people did not even go out to vote. That’s why Trump is in the White House. Because only the zealous idiots went out to vote (and they’ve already made up their mind way before Facebook on what kind of a white racist country they would like) and the majority of people just gave up and stayed at home.

    Also we’re all influenced by way more than Facebook in our daily lives all the time. The media in general should be audited for the way it decides to give voice to some and deny others, and bury other stories. This is just the tip of the iceberg.

    Don’t get me started on commercials and the subtle psychology of influencing consumer behavior….

  45. MoAnne says:

    Zuckerberg is a traitor to me. Anyone who cares about his/her country would have tried to stop a foreign government from interfering with our election, and mining people’s data for nefarious reasons. He values money & fame over all else. I now dislike him as much as Trump, and that’s really saying something.

  46. aenflex says:

    Dunno why this comes as any type of surprise. Users are the product on Facebook. Companies are the consumers. Of course they’re mining and exploiting. Duh.

    Personally I don’t care if they mine my cycles in order to advertise things to me. Targeted advertising isn’t all bad, and can be very convenient. Also, I’m smart enough to get my news elsewhere. If only everyone were.