Exec Facebook: We don’t prioritize commitment to security | Economic news

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By BARBARA ORTUTAY, AP Technology Writer

Facebook executive rebuts claims by whistleblower – supported by the company’s own internal research – that social media products harm children and fuel polarization in the United States

Monika Bickert, head of global policy management at Facebook, told The Associated Press on Wednesday that “we are not doing it and we have not prioritized the commitment to security.” Bickert said the reason Facebook is researching teen wellness on Instagram is because the company can create better products and features to support them.

Whistleblower Frances Haugen, however, told the Senate on Tuesday that Facebook knew its systems were harming vulnerable people and had not made significant changes to prevent it. The platform is designed to harness negative emotions in order to keep people on the platform, she said.

“They are aware of the side effects of the amplification choices they have made,” Haugen said. “They know that algorithm-based rankings, or engagement-based rankings, keep you on their sites longer. You have longer sessions, you show up more often, and it earns them more money. .

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Bickert pointed out the features and tools that Facebook has introduced over the years, such as hiding ‘like accounts’ on Instagram, “which means when you post something, if you’re a youngster, you don’t. to worry about the number of people. will like your post and if people will see it.

But Facebook’s own researchers found that hiding like accounts didn’t help teens feel better.

Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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