Zuckerberg Admits Facebook Collects Data on Non-Users

Hannah Rogers
April 16, 2018

In an effort to make amends the company is contacting the 87 million users whose data was obtained by Cambridge Analytica, the outfit that has come under fire over the way its business operates and the ways in which it has used data to manipulate voters in elections around the world.

Communication and Informatics Minister Rudiantara asserted that he will not hesitate to shut down Facebook's operation in Indonesia if the social media giant is proven to bring negative influences towards the country and its society.

A handful of individuals even went so far as to hold up their phones or tablets to demonstrate that they know how to use Facebook. Any violations of the 2011 agreement could subject Facebook to fines of $41,484 per violation per user per day.

Though consumers have been willing to subscribe to some online services, social media experts say when it comes to firms like Facebook - which has been free since its launch and whose ads can easily be scrolled past - a pay model is unlikely to catch on.

"I would not assume that it is private that it's not being collected and tracked by Facebook - it is", she said.

When asked about the possibility of a paid service during Senate testimony this week, Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg said his company would "certainly consider ideas like that".

Are we wrong to expect privacy? "I think it's those kinds of manipulation of policy messages or political messages that potentially undermined the civil discourse and the kind of nation that we started out as".

"The biggest growing segment for these social media platforms is the youth, and they grew up with this, so they know all their data is being collected, and they know they don't have privacy", said Detert.

Cambridge Analytica, co-founded by former Trump adviser Stephen Bannon and billionaire Trump supporter and extreme right-wing ideologue Robert Mercer, claimed it could create "psycho-graphic profiles" of people based on their Facebook data.

I'm just like you and the other 200 million users in the United States who post to Facebook.

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Asked if people could opt out, Facebook added, "There are basic things you can do to limit the use of this information for advertising, like using browser or device settings to delete cookies".

"I've been covering consumer attitudes and behaviours for a long time, and I don't see consumers changing their behaviour very often", said Fatemeh Khatibloo, an analyst at Forrester Research.

"I still think that it's the best channel for reaching the majority of people, no matter what their age or what their demographic is", Heeg said.

"If I'm not a Facebook user, I ought to have a right to know what data Facebook has about me", Froomkin said.

Over the past half-decade, Swiss authorities have sent 361 data requests to Facebook, mostly related to the tracking of potential terrorist activities.

"Coming out of the Cambridge Analytica scandal as it were, I don't think it is as sinister as the media and the congress and the senate in the U.S. are portraying it to be".

We have a responsibility to protect your information.

The best news for Facebook Inc. the company was that Zuckerberg ably deflected any challenges to the beating heart of its economic model: its hungry data collection and the fine-tuned targeted advertising based on that data. It calculated the maximum number of friends that users could have had while the personality quiz app built by Cambridge Analytica was collecting data.

The hearings generated much heat but little light, as was predicted by Zeynep Tufekci, a professor at the University of North Carolina and one of the keenest observers of Facebook and our evolving digital landscape.

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