A once anonymous former Facebook employee named Francis Haugen spent much of her time with the company gathering secretive information so that it could eventually be released to the public.
Fox Business reported, Haugen accused the company of placing profit above the good for the public, despite assurances from Facebook leadership that the company was working to make the platform safe.
Though, Haugen’s idea of a “safe platform” is one that censors non illegal political statements that could be viewed as “polarizing.”
Individuals should be free to express themselves online in any way that they choose, so long as they are not violating the law.
Unfortunately, most political discourse happens online. The internet is one of the most popular channel for communication around the
“There were conflicts of interest between what was good for the public and what was good for Facebook. And Facebook, over and over again, chose to optimize for its own interests, like making more money,” she said.
Haugen argues that because Facebook is willing to allow polarizing statements to circulate, they must be prioritizing profit over safety.
The more engagement Facebook gets, the more money the company will inevitably make. She argues that people are more likely to engage with polarizing content, therefore it becomes more popular.
In a statement Facebook said, “Every day our teams have to balance protecting the right of billions of people to express themselves openly with the need to keep our platform a safe and positive place. We continue to make significant improvements to tackle the spread of misinformation and harmful content. To suggest we encourage bad content and do nothing is just not true.”
Society cannot expect Facebook to be the arbiter if truth. Many times has the organization tried, and failed.
At one point Facebook was censoring users who entertained the idea that COVID-19 was created in a lab.
Users were banned, and posts were marked as “misinformation.”
Months later, when the theory was legitimately recognized by scientists and world leaders, Facebook was humiliated.