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Weaponizing anti-Semitism: Civil rights groups call for Facebook board overhaul

20 December, 2018, 14:28 | Author: Joanna Little
  • Karl Racine District of Columbia attorney general center and Brian Frosh Maryland attorney general left arrive at a news conference in Washington D.C. US on Monday

The lawsuit alleges that Facebook told users that it would protect their personal information, but allowed the app developer to collect and sell the data of users who hadn't downloaded or used the app.

According to the report, the social network had allowed Microsoft Corp.'s Bing search engine to see names of virtually all Facebook users' friends without consent, and gave Spotify and Netflix the ability to read Facebook users' private messages. The organization criticized Facebook for not doing enough to protect the data of its African-American users.

The records also showed that their applications sought the data of hundreds of millions of people a month. Some were still in effect this year.

"Facebook has taken relatively little action commensurate with the action on the site", said Scott Simpson, public advocacy director ofMuslim Advocates, one of the organizations that led the development of the letter.

Racine said Facebook had tried to settle the case before he filed the lawsuit, as is typical during investigations of large companies.

Warner, the top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee that heard testimony from Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg in September, has previously put forth several potential measures for regulating tech companies.

But he said most of the features are now gone.

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"It has never been more clear", Schatz tweeted.

The partners were "prohibited" from using the personal information for other purposes, he said. They expressed scepticism that businesses as varied as device makers, retailers and search companies would be viewed alike by the agency.

"I don't want to regulate Facebook, but doggone it, they've got to stop doing this", Kennedy said.

Facebook said in a statement: "We're reviewing the complaint and look forward to continuing our discussions with attorneys general in DC and elsewhere".

"Facebook faces a number of serious civil-rights challenges, including allegations of allowing the propagation of hate speech and misinformation and the facilitation of voter suppression, discriminatory ad targeting, privacy lapses, unfair censorship, and algorithmic bias".

Civil rights groups were calling for a major leadership change at Facebook one day after a damning report confirmed how the social media giant allowed Russian Federation to use its platform to target African-Americans in the 2016 election.


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