In addition to the fact that having my own blogs lets me control and own my own content and “look and feel”, add links and additional interactive content, and not be under anyone else’s editorial control, there’s a reason I don’t use Facebook (or any other social media platform) as my primary way of messaging the world: so I rely on amoral, self-serving jackholes like Mark Zuckerberg as little as possible. For me, Facebook’s true purpose is to point you to my newest articles.
- “If you enable a scumbag, then you are a scumbag” is tip #99 in the 20th Anniversary Edition of The Pragmatic Programmer. Andy and Dave talk about it in their interview on the Code Newbie podcast. They say that it’s a reminder of the power that software has over people’s lives these days, and “as programmers we are blessed and cursed with the fact that we are creating the new world. The world is now formed largely in code and that’s incredible responsibility and obviously it’s being misused.”
- New York Times: Zuckerberg Defends Hands-Off Approach to Trump’s Posts. Timothy Aveni, a Facebook software engineer who resigned after Mr. Zuckerberg’s decision to leave up Mr. Trump’s posts, said on his Facebook page on Monday that the company wasn’t enforcing its own rules to ban speech that promotes violence. “Facebook will keep moving the goalposts every time Trump escalates, finding excuse after excuse not to act on increasingly dangerous rhetoric,” Mr. Aveni said.
- Yahoo! Finance: Trump Had A ‘Productive’ Call With Facebook CEO Day After He Signed Executive Order Targeting Social Media: Report. “I know many people are upset that we’ve left the President’s posts up, but our position is that we should enable as much expression as possible unless it will cause imminent risk of specific harms or dangers spelled out in clear policies,” the Facebook CEO said in a statement Friday. I disagree strongly with how the President spoke about this, but I believe people should be able to see this for themselves, because ultimately accountability for those in positions of power can only happen when their speech is scrutinized out in the open,” he added.
- CNBC: Civil rights leaders say they’re ‘disappointed and stunned’ after call with Facebook’s Zuckerberg and Sandberg. “We are disappointed and stunned by Mark’s incomprehensible explanations for allowing the Trump posts to remain up,” wrote the leaders, Rashad Robinson of Color of Change, Vanita Gupta of the Leadership Conference and Sherrilyn Ifill of LDF. “He did not demonstrate understanding of historic or modern-day voter suppression and he refuses to acknowledge how Facebook is facilitating Trump’s call for violence against protesters. Mark is setting a very dangerous precedent for other voices who would say similar harmful things on Facebook.”
- Recode: Mark Zuckerberg on leaked audio: Trump’s looting and shooting reference “has no history of being read as a dog whistle”. Firstly: wrong — it has a racist history. Two: Only six people were involved in Facebook’s process on this decision, including policy VP Joel Kaplan, who has come under scrutiny for reportedly stymieing efforts to reduce polarization on the platform and openly supporting Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh during his controversial Senate hearings. Notably missing from the decision-making process was Facebook’s head of integrity, Guy Rosen, who is tasked with overseeing efforts around general user safety on the platform.
- The Verge: How to think about polarization on Facebook. “Our algorithms exploit the human brain’s attraction to divisiveness,” read a slide from a 2018 presentation. “If left unchecked,” it warned, Facebook would feed users “more and more divisive content in an effort to gain user attention & increase time on the platform.” […] Fixing the polarization problem would be difficult, requiring Facebook to rethink some of its core products. Most notably, the project forced Facebook to consider how it prioritized “user engagement”—a metric involving time spent, likes, shares and comments that for years had been the lodestar of its system.”