Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has responded to a New York Times article published on Wednesday alleging that the social media platform has launched an extensive smear campaign targeting rivals, pressuring journalists to uncover implied secret financial links between George Soros and the growing anti-Facebook movement, discredited anti-Facebook protestors and downplaying their own reluctance to investigate the Russian interference in the 2016 elections.
What is this Facebook scandal about?
In the latest scandal to hit Facebook, the social media platform is being accused of using dark PR practices to tackle its past scandals.
When its users discovered this past spring that Facebook had compromised their privacy to expand its operations globally, giving access to many of its users’ data in the United States to Cambridge Analytica, Facebook attempted to deflect blame and underwrite the extent of the problem.
And while Mr. Zuckerberg orchestrated a public apology tour that involved himself testifying before Congress and other officials appearing before Parliament, at the same time Facebook used a Republican opposition-research firm to discredit privacy advocates and anti-Facebook activist protests by blaming George Soros for financing their activities.
Facebook also tapped into its corporate connections to have a Jewish civil rights group call criticism of the company as anti-Semitic.
In the wake of the damning Times report, some US lawmakers are calling for more regulation of the tech firm.
How has Mr. Zuckerberg responded?
In a lengthy conference call on Thursday, Mr. Zuckerberg admitted that the company was slow to respond to the election meddling. He also admitted to the company not reacting to the crisis the best way they could. He also acknowledged that he didn’t know everything that was happening in his tech firm, according to a Cnet article.
“When you run a company that has tens of thousands of people, there will be people who are doing things I don’t know about inside the company,” said Mr. Zuckerberg.
Facebook and its history with scandals
Facebook isn’t new to the world of crisis control. The many scandals brought to light earlier this year have hurt Facebook immensely. This appears to be the latest in the ever-growing list of Facebook’s scandals brought to the public’s attention in 2018.
The social media company has been facing a string of scandals. It was caught logging Android users’ call history and SMS data. Facebook was also found to have shared data with mobile device manufacturers. Apple, Samsung, and Huawei were some of the manufacturers benefiting from the data-sharing agreement. The latter was under great scrutiny by Congress and by President Trump’s White House.