Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen testifies in UK Parliament

LONDON — Regulators have a small window of alternative to behave on the unfold of hate speech and different dangerous content material on Facebook, whistleblower Frances Haugen informed U.Ok. lawmakers Monday.

"When an oil spill happens, it doesn't make it harder for us to regulate oil companies," Haugen mentioned at a listening to in U.Ok. Parliament on new laws aimed toward tackling dangerous content material on-line.

"Right now, Facebook is closing the door on us being able to act. We have a slight window of time to regain people control over AI."

Haugen hit the headlines earlier this month when she was revealed to be the whistleblower behind the leak of a cache of inner Facebook paperwork that, most notably, confirmed the corporate was conscious of the hurt attributable to its Instagram app to teenagers' psychological well being.

The ex-Facebook worker testified in U.S. Congress, accusing firm administration of prioritizing "profits before people," a declare CEO Mark Zuckerberg described as "just not true."

It marks one of many largest crises in latest historical past for Facebook, and arrives as regulators around the globe look to curb the sheer energy and affect of America's tech giants.

Over the weekend, a flood of recent stories emerged based mostly on extra leaked data from Haugen.

One of the stories mentioned Facebook was unprepared to cope with the Jan. 6 riot on the U.S. Capitol constructing, citing inner paperwork. Another detailed the unfold of hate speech and content material inciting violence in India on Facebook's companies.

'Irresponsible'

Speaking in Parliament on Monday, Haugen reiterated her declare that Facebook places earnings over individuals. She mentioned the corporate refuses to introduce friction on the platform that daunts engagement in dangerous content material as "they don't want to lose that growth."

"Facebook has been unwilling to accept even a little sliver of profit being sacrificed for safety," Haugen mentioned.

Haugen additionally slammed the work tradition at Facebook as akin to that of a start-up. She mentioned she usually had "no idea" who to flag her issues with when working on the firm.

"There is a culture that lionizes a start-up ethic that, in my opinion, is irresponsible," Haugen mentioned, including that the corporate's leaders are reluctant to "slow the platform" down.

The tech government, who beforehand labored at Google and Pinterest, mentioned Facebook ought to rent 10,000 additional engineers to work on security as a substitute of 10,000 engineers to construct the "metaverse."

Facebook disputed Haugen's testimony Monday, saying in an announcement it has "always had the commercial incentive to remote harmful content."

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"People don't want to see it when they use our apps and advertisers don't want their ads next to it," a Facebook spokesperson informed CNBC by way of e-mail. "That's why we've invested $13 billion and hired 40,000 people to do one job: keep people safe on our apps."

"While we have rules against harmful content and publish regular transparency reports, we agree we need regulation for the whole industry so that businesses like ours aren't making these decisions on our own."

Haugen additionally questioned the function performed by the Oversight Board, a Facebook-funded physique that's meant to carry the corporate to account over its moderation selections. She says Facebook "actively misled" the board about key elements of the way it makes content material rulings.

"This is a defining moment for the Oversight Board," Haugen mentioned. "If Facebook can come in there and just actively mislead the Oversight Board, I don't know what the purpose of the Oversight Board is."

Damian Collins, chair of the U.Ok.'s joint committee on the Draft Online Safety Bill, known as the group "more of a hindsight board than an Oversight Board."

Haugen lately accepted an invite to fulfill with the Oversight Board.

based mostly on web site supplies www.cnbc.com

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