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Mark Zuckerberg Testifies: Day One

Photo Credit: NYMag.com

Mark Zuckerberg faced Congress today, providing more insight into just how it was possible for Cambridge Analytica to collect and use up to 87 million Facebook profiles.

For five hours, the Facebook CEO answered questions before a joint session of the Commerce and Judiciary committees. Zuckerberg appeared boyishly humble, yet direct. While answering questions, he focused almost exclusively on Facebook’s new changes in light of the data leak, and affirmed a clear sense of civic duty.

The whole point of the congressional hearing is to understand the “how” of Facebook: How it collects data, how it tracks user activity, how personal data is harvested. The official title of the hearing itself is “Facebook, Social Media Privacy, and the Use and Abuse of Data.”

Instead, it became a free-for-all to express a wide range of grievances. There were 44 senators present and each only had 5 minutes to ask questions. 

Everything from hate speech, social media addiction, and the lack of diversity in the tech industry, to discrimination in advertising was discussed. All of these concerns are important matters, but it ate up some serious time. If the questions were more technical in nature and sought to understand exactly how Facebook uses the information it collects with third parties, we all just might get a better idea of the extent to which user privacy is compromised.

We all know Facebook is watching and collecting information. We just don’t know how. Maybe we’ll find out tomorrow? Stay tuned here

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