Wall Street Journal: Facebook Tried to Make Its Platform a Healthier Place. It Got Angrier Instead.. “Facebook’s chief executive, Mark Zuckerberg, said the aim of the algorithm change was to strengthen bonds between users and to improve their well-being…. Within the company, though, staffers warned the change was having the opposite effect, the documents show. It was making Facebook’s platform an angrier place. Company researchers discovered that publishers and political parties were reorienting their posts toward outrage and sensationalism. That tactic produced high levels of comments and reactions that translated into success on Facebook.”
New York Times: The Rise and Fall of ‘ZuckTalk’. “ZuckTalk is a style of unpolished speech exhibited in contexts where polish is customary. It’s a linguistic hooded sweatshirt in a metaphorical boardroom. It is more than a collection of tics, but its tics are crucial to understanding it.”
Berkeley News: Berkeley Talks: Roger McNamee on his quest to stop Facebook. “In episode 120 of Berkeley Talks, longtime venture capitalist Roger McNamee discusses how he, an early investor in Facebook and former adviser to Mark Zuckerberg, came to realize the damage caused by the social media giant and others like it, and how he’s committed to try to stop them.” This is a one-hour video, but I spot-checked it and it appears to be completely captioned.
Daily Beast: How I Know Facebook Can’t Fix the Problems It Profits From. “One would think this urgent global crisis would inspire Facebook, which now has over 2 billion users, global influence, and ownership of Instagram and Whatsapp, to use its immense financial and human resources to proactively and aggressively remove anti-vaccination disinformation and bad faith actors. If you believe this, you also probably think billionaires might spend their obscene wealth during these calamitous times on raising workers’ wages, fighting hunger and investing in infrastructure. Instead, they are locked in a race to escape Earth altogether. And, based on my own experience working with Facebook, I would bet heavily against them ever doing the right thing.”
BBC: Zuckerberg wants Facebook to become online ‘metaverse’. “Mark Zuckerberg has laid out his vision to transform Facebook from a social media network into a ‘metaverse company’ in the next five years. A metaverse is an online world where people can game, work and communicate in a virtual environment, often using VR headsets.”
New York Times: Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg’s Partnership Did Not Survive Trump. “To achieve its record-setting growth, the company had continued building on its core technology, making business decisions based on how many hours of the day people spent on Facebook and how many times a day they returned. Facebook’s algorithms didn’t measure if the magnetic force pulling them back to Facebook was the habit of wishing a friend happy birthday, or a rabbit hole of conspiracies and misinformation.”
Irish Times: Facebook rejects two proposals to reduce Zuckerberg’s control over the company. “Facebook has rejected two proposals intended to diminish chief executive Mark Zuckerberg’s control over the company, an expected though disappointing outcome for those worried about the chief executive’s power. The board on Wednesday turned down a proposal to replace Mr Zuckerberg as chairman with an independent representative. Mr Zuckerberg, who has served as chairman since 2012, controls about 58 per cent of the voting shares, according to a regulatory filing.”
CNET: Facebook, Instagram working on tools to help creators make money. “Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said Tuesday the social network is working on new tools to help people who do creative work make more money, including a marketplace to match brands with creators. Zuckerberg also said the company was building online shops so creators can sell items directly on the social media platform and a way for them to get a cut of the sales of products they’re recommending.”
NBC News: Zuckerberg calls for changes to tech’s Section 230 protections. “The proposal, which Zuckerberg will present during his testimony before the House Energy and Commerce Committee on Thursday, would raise the bar for social media companies that are currently granted immunity from liability for the content that appears on their platforms.” So giant companies which have a leg up in development and resources sail onward while smaller social networks are crushed by compliance costs.
CNET: Google, Facebook, Twitter CEOs will face US lawmakers again: How to watch. “It’s not the first time that Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Google CEO Sundar Pichai have been grilled by lawmakers about how they moderate content but the coronavirus pandemic and the election season has put a larger spotlight on the topic. The virtual hearing comes as US lawmakers consider new regulation that could put more pressure on online platforms to do a better job of combating lies.”
Toronto Star: Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg summoned to testify before parliamentary committee. “Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has been summoned to appear before a House of Commons standing committee within the next 30 days. The summons was contained in a motion adopted by the Canadian Heritage standing committee on Friday and states that Zuckerberg is legally required to attend for at least 90 minutes.”
“Mark Changed The Rules”: How Facebook Went Easy On Alex Jones And Other Right-Wing Figures (BuzzFeed News)
BuzzFeed News: “Mark Changed The Rules”: How Facebook Went Easy On Alex Jones And Other Right-Wing Figures. “Internal documents obtained by BuzzFeed News and interviews with 14 current and former employees show how the company’s policy team — guided by Joel Kaplan, the vice president of global public policy, and Zuckerberg’s whims — has exerted outsize influence while obstructing content moderation decisions, stymieing product rollouts, and intervening on behalf of popular conservative figures who have violated Facebook’s rules.”
Mashable: Facebook moderators blast Zuckerberg, claim he’s risking their lives for profits. “Mark Zuckerberg’s drive for profits might end with their deaths. So argue the more than 200 content moderators who published an open letter Wednesday accusing the Facebook CEO of hypocrisy and a wanton disregard for their health during a raging pandemic. In demanding many return to the office, the moderators insist, both Zuckerberg and the CEOs of content moderation companies CPL and Accenture have taken the psychologically taxing job of content moderation and added the deadly element of coronavirus exposure.”
CNN: Facebook and Twitter chart out different paths for Congress on internet regulation. “In a Senate hearing on Tuesday that stretched on for more than four hours, the CEOs of Facebook and Twitter sought to recalibrate their relationship with Congress, apologizing for past mistakes while trying to set the tone for future regulation of their industry that’s expected to see a bigger push in 2021.”
CNET: Facebook, Twitter CEOs to visit Congress again: How to watch on Tuesday. “The virtual hearing marks the second time Zuckerberg and Dorsey are to appear before lawmakers in less than a month. On Oct. 28, the executives, along with Google CEO Sundar Pichai, testified at a hearing on Section 230, a law that gives internet companies immunity for content posted by their users. That hearing strayed from its intended purpose, with senators challenging the trio on content moderation policies, including their responses to the New York Post story.”