Google, Facebook Domination Has Ruined The Internet For Everyone, Warns EPIC Report

The Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) warned in a statement to Congress that today’s internet is simply not sustainable thanks to the unsavory practices of internet bigwigs Facebook and Google. These two tech firms have so much power over the flow of information, they say, that internet users’ privacy is essentially “under assault.”

After all, their entire business model depends on them obtaining vast amounts of data about people to feed their algorithms. Their behavioral advertising targets consumers directly, using deep profiles of them and algorithms that look at race, religion, age, nationality, and other aspects of a person. They say that while ads should give people information about products, Facebook and Google are now giving advertisers information about consumers; these days, the consumers are the product.

MIT Technology Review points out that the combined market capitalization of the two firms was approximately equivalent to the GDP of Italy at $2 trillion. Three of every four dollars that are spent on digital advertising in the U.S. go to one of the two companies. Their constant refinement of their services and products attracts more users, which gives them even more data, fueling a never-ending cycle. Other businesses that start to look like a threat are quickly snapped up by the firms – for example, Facebook bought WhatsApp and Instagram.

 

Their reach goes way too far

EPIC also mentioned the practice of foreign advertisers buying political ads with the aim of undermining democratic elections. Washington state recently sued Google and Facebook for violations of their state’s campaign finance law due to their failure to maintain information about the buyers of election ads. This came in the wake of criticism across the board for the firms’ role in selling political ads; it was revealed that Russians bought ads using fake names with the aim of influencing American voters in the presidential election.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg faced Congress earlier this year to try to explain how Cambridge Analytica, a political data firm, obtained the data of 97 million Facebook users without informing them or getting their consent.

 

Google and Facebook are not just in control – they’re also completely biased

If Google doesn’t like your point of view or you’re telling truths that could hurt their advertisers’ profits, they ensure that your site will be buried so far down in the search results – if it appears at all – that you won’t get much traffic and your bottom line will take a huge hit. They’ve also taken to restricting ad serving on the pages that they don’t agree with, and it’s often these ads that keep such sites afloat. It’s an easy way for them to stifle opposing viewpoints.

Ditto for Facebook, who only need to slap a “fake news” label on sites that are reporting information they find inconvenient to ensure they stay buried. The aim, it appears, is to essentially put the bloggers and independent news sites that give people a much-needed alternative point of view out of business. As much as they can try to claim otherwise, algorithms are written by human beings – humans with their own biases and agendas, even if they’re not overt.

Some concerned observers have called for Google and Facebook to sell off YouTube and WhatsApp/Instagram respectively to give them less power. What people read and buy – and indeed, what they see in the first place – is controlled by this very dangerous duopoly, and most people don’t even realize what is happening.

Sources for this article include:

WND.com

TechnologyReview.com

Reuters.com

naturalnews

Source Article from https://worldtruth.tv/google-facebook-domination-has-ruined-the-internet-for-everyone-warns-epic-report/

Is Facebook Just A Virtual Platform For Our Ego?

  • The Facts:

    Facebook is a great platform, but are we using it, or is it using us?

  • Reflect On:

    Are we using Facebook with intention and integrity? Are we being authentic and vulnerable on the platform?

In many ways, Facebook has served us, bringing people from all over the world together. It seems everyone is on Facebook and if they’re not, we’re usually shocked — Really? Wow, how do you even communicate, bro? We all know a few of these elusive people… But, how can I creep your profile and stalk you if you’re not even on Facebook?! Perhaps these people understand some of the darker sides of Facebook.

Without Facebook, there’s a chance I never would have found Collective Evolution online and then moved to Toronto in 2010 to join the team. It has served a powerful purpose for connecting like-minded individuals across the globe and bringing a wave of knowledge and truth to those who are seeking. However, as with basically everything else, this doesn’t come without a cost — as connecting as it can be in a virtual realm, it seems, in reality, many people are feeling more disconnected than ever before. So, why is this?

To the average user, Facebook provides a platform to share our successes, our accomplishments, our fun adventures and our beautiful pictures. But, what about the other side of life; the darker times, the challenges, the real and authentic vulnerability that helps to truly connect us and help us to see that we are not alone? That is where Facebook is lacking.

When we are scrolling through our newsfeed, and we are seeing how great everyone else’s life is — who’s travelling, who’s getting married, who’s having kids, who’s beautiful, who has bought a house etc. It may cause us to feel inadequate in our own lives, why does it seem like everyone else has the perfect life except for me? These are all thoughts I’m sure we have all thought to ourselves at some point or another.

But what we often don’t realize is that the people who we admire are often feeling the same thing as us when they are scrolling through their own newsfeed. It is so important to know that WE ALL FACE CHALLENGES, all of us. This is a natural part of life and ultimately; it’s what is pushing us in the direction to step fully into our purpose and potential.

The Addiction Factor Is Real

In the name of absolute transparency, I am guilty of this. Because a large portion of my job involves Facebook directly I catch myself mindlessly scrolling from time to time. Looking for that next interesting post to give me that quick hit of dopamine, stealing many precious moments away from my day.

When I post something and I hear that little “ding” a part of me is excited to see what it is, did someone “like” my post? Ooh, maybe someone even “loved” it, is there a comment? Says that little voice inside my head. Really, sometimes it leaves me questioning why I am even posting anything to begin with, is it because I authentically have something to share, or that I am bored and seeking some sort of validation or approval?

These thoughts triggered a conversation with a close friend about the idea that Facebook essentially serves as a virtual platform for our egos. In a sense our ego gets to live out this life with a little avatar and share only the most perfect moments, in some cases, the most beautiful and retouched photos, everything that we wish we were, everything that we feel that everyone else wants to see. When we do this however, we are ignoring a huge and important aspect of the shadow side and that is — ourselves.

This side of us is just as important as any other. By embracing this part of ourselves, not only are we able to step through this ‘darkness,’ but by being open and authentic with this facet of ourselves we can in turn, even if unknowingly assist others who may also be struggling.

Related CE Podcast: Ep #17: Who You Truly Are

Drama, Drama, Drama

Okay, so there’s a good chance that we all have a few of those friends who like to use Facebook as a platform to vent, about ex-partners, horrible jobs, hardships, and other drama. Maybe you see these posts and roll your eyes, maybe you can empathize with these words because you have been in a similar scenario, maybe you just love the drama. While there are no rules to this game, and we can use Facebook however you like, a good thing to ask yourself before posting is, how is this serving?

There is a difference between airing your dirty laundry on Facebook and sharing from your heart. The difference is the intention behind it. Do you wish to slander someone else, in order to make yourself feel better? Have you been going through a challenging time and have insight and awareness around the issue that you’d like to share? Are you seeking wisdom from your friends? There are really so many ways to use Facebook.

Anyone who knows me, knows that my life is essentially an open book. I am always willing to share, the good, the bad and the ugly and often I do so on Facebook as well. I do find that when my purpose is to simply share an experience, whether positive or negative, I receive a very heartfelt response. When I share about my challenges, I do so from a place of vulnerability, because I believe that there is tremendous power in being vulnerable.

Often I am overwhelmed with responses of so many people responding with deep appreciation because they too, have been experiencing a similar struggle or issue and, really, it feels damn good to know that we are all going through challenges. When we can allow ourselves to be fully vulnerable and express ourselves from the heart and to use Facebook as a platform to do so we can truly connect, from a place of compassion, empathy and understanding with one another. This takes away from the ego-fuelled attention game that so many of us are unwilling participants in and allows us to see that really, we aren’t so different after all.

Use ‘The Book’ With Intention

Yes, share your successes, and share your accomplishments but, I also challenge you to share the struggle of what brought you there, how did it happen, what roadblocks did you have to push through to get to where you are now? Speak from your heart and speak your truth. Don’t worry so much about what people might think to learn more about the real you, because chances are they will be able to relate in a way you never thought possible, and they may even be inspired, too. Before posting, anything really, ask yourself, what is your intention for posting it? This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t share pictures from your travels, or your new hairdo, but ask yourself why is this important and see what comes up.

We are craving real connection more and more these days and longing for a sense of community. Facebook can serve in this way if this is how we choose to use it. Be mindful of your activity, and most importantly, don’t forget to actually get out and live your life and take a good old break from Facebook from time to time. Go out and do something without any intention of sharing it, do it for you – not to satisfy your ego!

Much Love

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Source Article from http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/Collective-evolution/~3/9qDft1pvaVM/

Like a bad boyfriend, Facebook will harass you mercilessly if you try to break up

facebook

    

Breaking up with Facebook is apparently as difficult as breaking up with a bad boyfriend or girlfriend who won’t accept your decision. That’s the experience Henry Grabar of Slate had when he stopped signing on. He stopped logging in on June 6 and stayed off Facebook for ten days. He had been a member for over ten years and this was the longest period he had remained off the social network. But Facebook didn’t leave him alone. He received 17 email messages in a span of nine days urging him to return.

Grabar is not alone in trying to wean himself off Facebook for various reasons. Some do it because they realize it can be a waste of time, while others do it because of the company’s inability to protect (or lack of interest in protecting) its members’ personal data. The company has mistakenly released data of nearly 100 million of its members and friends of members to third parties, and many of them have used the data for illicit purposes. While Facebook says they are not losing members, some recent statistics paint a different story. According to a Pew study, only 51 percent of U.S. teenagers use the service now, down from 71 percent in 2015. This was the first time the numbers have fallen.

Grabar found that the messages he received actually reinforced his decision to stay off the platform. On one day he received two emails telling him a distant friend had posted a new photo. On another day he received a message telling him that 88 people liked a post in a group he belonged to. And on another day he received an email telling him there was a post to his college alumni group.

A few days later he was notified in an email that a few dozen members of a group he belonged to had commented about a news article. The email notices followed along these lines and included more messages about Facebook friends adding new photos or commenting on other posts, and even emailing him reminders to “see what people are talking about in your group.” Then he received an email in the middle of the night asking, “You up? How about a little late-night content from a guy on your soccer team who is the little brother of your colleague’s boyfriend?”

The following day there was an email saying, “5 people like a post in your group.” And another: “603 people like a photo in your group.” It continued much like this over the ten days he was off.

Now you’d think this annoyance would cement his decision to stay off, but, no, the writer decided he was missing too much and signed back on to Facebook.

“Two people. Like a post. In a group. This was probably the least inviting email of all, but it also happened to be the last one,” he wrote. “Later that day I was back on my old computer … and back, with a quick Command-T, F, enter, on Facebook.”

Source Article from https://www.sott.net/article/388685-Like-a-bad-boyfriend-Facebook-will-harass-you-mercilessly-if-you-try-to-break-up

Cop Suspended After Facebook Post Selling Coffee Mugs With Pics of Incapacitated Citizens

Appearing on the mug was a photo of a man whose hair was in dreadlocks. He was passed out asleep on a log, with a small seemingly empty baggie beside him. The implication was that the man got drunk and became incapacitated—so much so he was likely unaware someone was taking his photo. Also unclear is who exactly took the photo. But what is known is that the man, known as “Tanner,” is a local fixture around the town of Carbondale.

The unnamed officer’s actions are now the subject of an internal investigation. He has been placed on administrative leave with pay pending the outcome. We at TFTP interviewed a few people and asked what people thought of the mug and the way it was supposedly taken. The people we interviewed were outraged someone would attempt to profit off of the socioeconomic status of others.

Whoever took that picture of the drug addicted homeless man is just a dick,” said Jennifer H. “That guy probably had no idea his picture was being taken and if someone is making money off of his image, that person should give a large share of the profits to the man so he can hopefully get the help he needs.”

After we told her the person who is attempting to profit from the sale of the mugs is believed to be a police officer, Jennifer said, “That makes him an even bigger dick!” She told us the scene reminded her of Antoine Dodson’s news broadcast interview, which the Gregory Brothers took and auto-tuned into a viral hit. While the public reveled in the mockery of a very real attempted rape scenario, Dodson was able to profit from his interview going viral, earning enough money as he said, “to move my family from the projects.” The Gregory brothers split the earnings 50/50 with Dodson who later made several appearances on television shows.

The story of the officer who was apparently attempting to profit off of a homeless man was first reported by the Southern Illinoisan with several people commenting both for and against the officer’s actions.

To the cop apologist, police seemingly can do no wrong. A comment left by “Cato the Youngest” wrote, “A Carbondale citizen was selling coffee mugs with a photo taken in the public space. What is a problem here?” Another comment left by IRB204 said, “I agree it is insensitive but nothing the officer should be fired for.”

While it may be true that no crime was committed, the sad reality was not lost on others who took a more judgmental view. Gregg Todd wrote, “Cruel. A Carbondale cop is being investigated for selling mugs featuring a troubled citizen who appears intoxicated. Someone who treats homeless and troubled people this way should not be a cop. In the meantime, the cop is getting a vacation at taxpayer expense.”

According to a report from SILTV, the Carbondale Police Department is considering disciplinary procedures and “CPD says they take these matters seriously and claim if found to be valid, may lead to disciplinary measures in accordance with the City and Department Policies and Procedures.”

The identity of the reportedly mentally-ill alcoholic man is Jason Tanner. His identity was ascertained from comments gathered on the “WTF? Carbondale” Facebook page. Many of those who know Tanner had a lot to say about the insensitive actions of the Carbondale police officer. Chelsea Houston commented:

Are they using that money to pay for the tickets they continue to give this poor man? Probably not. Let’s exploit a mentally disabled alcoholic man for profit though. Nice job Carbondale Police Department… I also watched them not let him have his shirt back once after ripping it off of him and giving him a fine when they know he is harmless. Regardless, he is mentally disabled and doesn’t deserve to be made into a joke.

After having to defend herself from cop apologists and others who attempted to characterize Tanner as an “anarchist” and a “protagonist,” and someone who didn’t have a mental illness, Houston concluded:

Again, that’s fine, but as someone that works with people with disabilities and have witnessed alcohol addiction very personally, I find this unacceptable for the local police to get away with. Besides, fuck the Carbondale police. Tanner’s not a joke, that’s my point. He’s a solid dude that means well and deserves to be treated better than he is in his town. Okay, the cops have helped him. I have also witnessed a lot of the opposite when I was the assistant managers at RollNUp here in town. He’s a goofy dude but fuck, he still deserves respect. This isn’t respected to me. I respect everyone else’s opinion totally, personally I think it’s cruel.

No police officer should ever be allowed to profit off of the misfortune of those he is sworn to protect and serve, which also includes protecting the man’s identity from people who may want to profit from his visage. In this case, the man who is supposedly employed to protect the homeless man is actually exploiting him—all for the sake of a few laughs and a fistful of dollars. Here is the image in question:

A Carbondale police officer is selling coffee mugs with Tanner’s picture on them.

Posted by WTF? Carbondale on Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Instead of making a mockery of the man’s current state, the police officer could have set up a GoFundMe page and sold mugs with uplifting messages to give or share the profits with the man so he could get the kind of help he needs to improve his life.

If you would like to contact the Carbondale Police Department to share your opinion on this anonymous officer, call 618-457-3200 or visit the department’s Facebook page.

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Source Article from https://thefreethoughtproject.com/cop-suspended-after-facebook-post-selling-coffee-mugs-with-pics-of-incapacitated-citizens/

Left-wing hate group SPLC now being used by Amazon, Google, Facebook and Twitter to determine … “hate groups”


Image: Left-wing hate group SPLC now being used by Amazon, Google, Facebook and Twitter to determine … “hate groups”

(Natural News)
The social media behemoth’s targeting of Right-leaning, independent, conservative, Trump-supporting media just got a whole lot worse, according to an exclusive report by The Daily Caller’s Peter Hasson.

He writes that four of the largest tech-media platforms — Google, Facebook, Amazon, and Twitter — are now using the far-Left Southern Poverty Law Center to help them identify so-called “hate groups” that are using their platforms.

Critics say that’s the pot calling the kettle black; SPLC is a Left-wing hate organization, spreading lies and disinformation about conservatives, and especially President Trump. 

According to The Daily Caller, the SPLC can be found on a list of “external experts and organizations” that Facebook, among others, is working with “to inform [their] hate speech policies” — as noted by company spokeswoman Ruchika Budhraja in an interview with the news site.

She noted further that the social media behemoth consults the SPLC and other outside organizations when formulating hate speech policy. She added that Facebook officials typically hold between one and three meetings with these outside organizations.

Budhraja said Facebook’s hate speech policy was distinct from the SPLC, and that the company consults with organizations across the political spectrum, The DC reported.

Maybe, but Facebook and the SPLC appear to be keeping their relationship on the down-low as much as possible. For instance, the organization accused Facebook in May of doing too little to censor “anti-Muslim hate” on its platform. But that article didn’t say anything about the two working together.

During its investigation, The DC found that of the four tech-media companies listed, Amazon gives the SPLC the most direct authority. Facebook officials say the company remains independent of the SPLC and any other hate-monitoring organization, but Amazon is quite open and frank about the fact that it gives the SPLC carte blanche policing power regarding the Amazon Smile charitable program (while claiming to be unbiased). 

The Smile program gives customers the opportunity to identify a charity that receives 0.5 percent of the proceeds from Amazon purchases. The SPLC has complete control over who gets to participate and who does not.

As Hasson notes, the SPLC has this curious habit of only banning conservative, Christian organizations from the program: 

Christian legal groups like the Alliance Defending Freedom — which recently successfully represented a Christian baker at the Supreme Court — are barred from the Amazon Smile program, while openly anti-Semitic groups remain, TheDCNF found in May.

Twitter, meanwhile, lists the SPLC as a “safety partner” working with the social media platform of preference for POTUS Trump. The organization’s role is to help Twitter fight against “hateful conduct and harassment.”

Unless, of course, you’re a conservative supporter of the president. (Related: REAL.video is “the answer to YouTube censorship,” explains founder Mike Adams.)

The SPLC is also assisting Google and YouTube, the latter of which is owned by Google’s parent company, Alphabet. It’s one of more than 300 governmental and nongovernmental agencies monitoring for “hateful content,” but the vast majority of participant organizations remain shrouded in secrecy.

Experts who are well-acquainted with the SPLC know what a Marxist organization it really is. A favorite of the authoritarian Left, the SPLC regularly publishes a list of “hate groups” that has been consistently incorrect. The group had to retract four entries in March and April alone, after named conservative groups sued or threatened legal action. 

Even Dr. Ben Carson, a retired neurosurgeon who is now heading up Housing and Urban Development for President Trump, was shocked to find that he had made the SPLC’s “extremist watch list.” 

“When embracing traditional Christian values is equated to hatred, we are approaching the stage where wrong is called right and right is called wrong. It is important for us to once again advocate true tolerance,” Carson said. 

Read more about SPLC intolerance at Intolerance.news.

J.D. Heyes is also editor-in-chief of The National Sentinel.

Sources include:

NewsTarget.com

DailyCaller.com

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Source Article from http://www.naturalnews.com/2018-06-08-left-wing-hate-group-splc-now-being-used-by-amazon-google-facebook-and-twitter-to-determine-hate-groups.html

13 Things You Should Delete From Your Facebook Immediately

As of January 2018, it is estimated that Facebook has approximately 230 million users, making it the biggest social media network across the globe. It is a place where we connect with family, friends and loved ones regardless of how far away they may be – sharing photographs, stories, and life updates all in one convenient, easy to use location.

Unfortunately, as the platform grew in popularity, there were a number of potential privacy risks that came to light for those that used it. These often-overlooked points of concern may open the door for child predators, con artists, and identity thieves, or they may tarnish your reputation online threatening future relationships or employment opportunities. While there is no social media platform free from risk, recognizing and understanding these points will empower you to take the necessary steps to protect yourself.

Protect Your Privacy: 13 Things You Need to Delete from Facebook ASAP:

 

#1 – Your Relationship Status

While there are some situations where this isn’t a big concern, for example simply stating you are married if you are already wearing a wedding ring every day may seem obvious, for those that are still in the dating game, why would you share a running play by play of your dating life? Reserve this information for the people that are meaningful in your life.

 

#2 – Photographs of Children

Whether they are your children or other kids that you have a close relationship with like a niece or nephew, or a friend’s child, you should think twice before posting pictures of children online. First, your children are too young to consent to their photo being made public. Secondly, you risk those pictures falling into the hands of child predators. Don’t risk their safety.

 

#3 – Where Your Child Attends School

Once again, considering the actions of child predators, be cautious not to share information about where to find your child such as posting where they attend school, or what recreational groups they are a part of. This information could be used to gain access to your child.

 

#4 – Drunk or Questionable Photographs

Once used just to connect friends and family members, today social media is one of the first places that potential employers look. If your profile is full of random drunken photos, parties you’ve attended or stupid stunts that you have pulled it will paint a less than responsible picture of who you are.

 

#5 – ‘Friends’ You Don’t Know

For some, Facebook became a popularity contest where it was about how many friends you could accumulate rather than connect with those that you actually know. The danger with friend collecting is that you don’t’ know who is on the other side of that computer. Accepting that random friend request may actually be putting yourself at risk, don’t do it.

 

#6 – Your Credit or Debit Card Information

This may seem obvious; however, you may be surprised! If you are making a payment online, such as purchasing Facebook Ad space, always go back and remove your card information afterward. This information, when stored online, is available to be hacked by

 

#7 – Your Phone Number

In our highly technology driven world, your phone number can actually someone with a great deal of information. Not only are you making it easier for a con artist to steal your information, but consider this for a moment – would you walk down the street handing out your phone number to everyone you met? No! Why? Because you don’t want everyone to have it. So why would you make it public online?

 

#8 – Posts that You Have Been Tagged In

When you get a notification that your buddy or family member tagged you in a post, pay attention to what it may be. The photos and posts that you share are not the only ones that others will see if they are searching you on social media. Untag yourself from anything that may paint you in a negative light.

 

#9 – Your Birthday

Sure, it feels great to get that flood of messages on your birthday, as Facebook reminds everyone that it’s your big day. However, by putting your birthday out there publicly you are actually making it easier for those looking to steal your identity by providing them with key information.

 

#10 – Your Manager or Supervisor

While you aren’t going to intentionally post something that will create concern with your boss, why risk it? Something as simple as a picture from your night out with friends, or a post referencing your annoyance with a situation at work in passing may create trouble for you at work. Just don’t tell your boss that you have social media, there’s no need to advertise that.

 

#11 – Location Services

This one simple setting on your Facebook account may have some serious consequences. Consider for a moment, you head out for some drinks with your friends, your Facebook revealing that you are currently at your favorite bar when you post. You have now told the rest of the world that your house is empty, providing a window of opportunity for those who may wish to break in. Not only that, you are telling everyone where to find you at any given moment, even if you don’t want to be found by them. Turn off location services.

 

#12 – Where You Go on Vacation

Even if you have your location services turned off, you may still be advertising that it is an ideal time to break into your home. How? Consider your last big vacation. Did you post pictures of yourself on vacation while you were there? Did you share plans for your upcoming vacation before you left? You might as well put a sign on your front lawn.

 

#13 – Your Travel Tickets/Plans

It can be really exciting to finally get that boarding pass for your next flight or ticket for your cross-country train trip, but sharing that information on social media is once again equal to inviting potential robbers and predators to visit your home.

via:awarenessact.com

Source Article from https://worldtruth.tv/13-things-you-should-delete-from-your-facebook-immediately/

Facebook ‘apology tour’ is anything but charming

Mark Zuckerberg

    

Founder and CEO of Facebook Mark Zuckerberg was in Europe last week on what is being dubbed an “apology tour.”

This was the first time Zuckerberg set ground on the continent since the Cambridge Analytica scandal broke that compromised the data of about 2.7 million nationals on the continent. This was supposed to be his opportunity to apologize to European lawmakers for allowing the social media platform to be used for malpractice and to dispel some of their concerns about its handling of user information.

Unfortunately, it didn’t quite go to plan.

The European Parliament session Tuesday was mired with controversy from the outset. Originally, the testimony in Brussels was arranged as a closed-door meeting with only a select group of policymakers in attendance. This infuriated European lawmakers who insisted on a public hearing similar to the one Zuckerberg had on Capitol Hill six weeks ago. European Parliament President Antonio Tajani eventually acceded and allowed the session to be webstreamed live to the world.

But the troubles didn’t stop there: Once the session had begun and much to everyone’s bemusement, it quickly dawned on viewers that the format of the Q&A session was very unorthodox. Lawmakers went round in turns asking questions directed at Zuckerberg and it was only after a full 75 minutes of one-sided questioning that Zuckerberg had the opportunity to respond, leaving his total response time to fifteen minutes and where he clumped answers together, sticking to high level themes: what critics have called the perfect opportunity to “cherry-pick.”

This riled lawmakers and the reaction from Europe has been unabashedly angry with one MEP (member of the European Parliament) complaining that he had asked Zuckerberg “six yes and no questions” and had not got one answer. The outspoken pro-European MEP Guy Verhofstadt (who was also in attendance) tweeted that the “format was inappropriate” and warned that if written answers from Facebook are not “accurately answered in detail, the EU competition authorities must be activated and legislation sharpened.”

Warning shots are being fired.

One of the major concerns of the lawmakers was whether Facebook would be fully compliant with the new data privacy rules (GDPR) that came into force on May 25. Zuckerberg said that the company plans to fully comply with GDPR and that its three pillars of control, transparency and accountability are synonymous with Facebook’s own thinking. However, lawmakers remain skeptical. It’s unclear whether that compliance includes all users, whether any data has been transferred to outside the EU jurisdiction in anticipation and what Facebook does with the information of Facebook leavers. Selectively compliant then?

Zuckerberg also received questions on anti-trust issues, an area where Europe has become increasingly proactive in recent years. On whether Facebook is a monopoly, he responded that there are plenty of new competitors in the space with “tens of millions of users.” Incidentally, Facebook has 1.6 billion active users which puts it in a completely different stratosphere to these so-called competitors. But more relevantly, if Facebook is deemed a monopoly, then what is to stop regulators from breaking up its other businesses (i.e. WhatsApp, Instagram…)?

Taxation is another area that featured prominently. The European Commission has recently proposed a digital tax for companies whose users are based in Europe. While the tax is under discussion, the feeling from many politicians and lawmakers is that mega tech companies are not being taxed adequately given the size of their revenues. When asked about taxation in the testimony, Zuckerberg responded that “Facebook has always paid taxes in all of the countries where we have operations set up. We pay all taxes required by law and we invest heavily in Europe.” This prompted one MEP from the Greens party, Terry Reintke, to quip: “We urgently need stricter regulation on taxation. EU-wide. Now”

The visibly uncomfortable Zuckerberg continued his trip in Paris later in the week where he met with French President Emmanuel Macron alongside other key figures in tech. And while he may receive a slightly less hostile welcome there, taxation is also expected to feature high on the list of topics as well.

But this is most definitely not the last time Zuckerberg will have to respond to questions on the continent. If the purpose of this tour was to stop Europe from being worried about Facebook, the exact opposite has occurred: Facebook should be worried about Europe.

Source Article from https://www.sott.net/article/386802-Facebook-apology-tour-is-anything-but-charming