Facebook’s website had an entire section devoted to touting the “success stories” of political campaigns that used the social network to influence electoral outcomes. That page, however, is now gone, even as the 2018 congressional primaries get underway.
Most companies define their business with a mission statement, a sentence capturing the essence of what the company does. The mission statement is communicated to staff with communication of goals and alignment of incentives with those goals, nudging workers to “do the right things” to achieve the company’s mission.
Some companies use internal propaganda messaging. I once worked in an organization that plastered the walls with posters saying “Every day you are working to change the world!”
At Facebook, their motto is “Bringing the world closer together“. Sounds admirable, doesn’t it?
When these phrases are plastered on the walls and frequently communicated to staff, you are seeing propaganda at work. And Facebook is a world expert at propaganda messaging!
Their mission statement has varied from “Facebook’s mission is to give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected” to “Facebook’s mission is to give people the power to build community and bring the world closer together. People use Facebook to stay connected with friends and family, to discover what’s going on in the world, and to share and express what matters to them“. (See also a history of their mission statements.)
Again, that sounds positive for all. Most Facebook employees signed on board to support this mission statement. In light of their spying fiasco, Zuckerberg has doubled down on this mission statement.
No where is there a hint that Facebook’s actual business is surveillance and propaganda.
This week, Facebook staff learned their actual mission is to conduct mass surveillance on every one in the world and to leverage that surveillance into an ideal platform for the distribution of propaganda.
Many Facebook employees are discovering they were duped. This is leading to internal questioning and morale issues as they learn over half the population of the United States now has an unfavorable opinion of Facebook.
As CNET news writes:
In the wake of an explosive leak, there’s the growing sense that Facebook “isn’t the company it once was.”
Employees are splitting into groups:
- Those that still believe in the original myth of connecting people
- And those that realized they were duped into running a global surveillance and propaganda operation
Some will be calling for change while others will strongly resist.
Facebook is fighting a two front war – on the public facing side, half the country hates them and the other half is not yet decided. On the back, employee facing side, there is internal conflict and collapsing morale.
Zuckerberg owns the Democratic Party leadership:
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y.Schumer, whose daughter works as a product marketing manager at Facebook, recommended Slaughter in late January, and the nomination was reportedly held up over background checks.
just two weeks ago, Schumer said that tech companies were working to police themselves, that Facebook was a “a very positive force,” and that he was “sympathetic” to the company’s situation. The Cambridge Analytica scandal dropped a week later.
Facebook admits their system is designed to dupe people and treat Facebook users like, in Zuckerberg’s own words, “Dumb Fucks“.
We connect people. Period. That’s why all the work we do in growth is justified. All the questionable contact importing practices. All the subtle language that helps people stay searchable by friends. All of the work we do to bring more communication in. The work we will likely have to do in China some day. All of it,” VP Andrew “Boz” Bosworth wrote.
“So we connect more people,” he wrote in another section of the memo. “That can be bad if they make it negative. Maybe it costs someone a life by exposing someone to bullies.
“Maybe someone dies in a terrorist attack coordinated on our tools.”
Now we understand the Facebook team’s Likes, Comments, Posts, and can evaluate their interests, behavior and their mental health.
Facebook is a global criminal enterprise. Facebook is not your friend.
Facebook’s vice president of public policy for the Asia-Pacific region arrogantly interrupts and tells off the Chair of the Singapore Parliamentary committee asking questions about Cambridge Analytica. The raw arrogance of the Facebook VP is breath taking, trying tell the Committee what questions they are allowed to ask of him. The Chair politely, calmly and firmly shreds Facebook’s VP.
This is Facebook. They care about no one but themselves – and stealing your personal information.
Facebook is on a hiring spree in Washington as the social network bulks up its ranks of lobbyists in the midst of a privacy scandal that cuts to the heart of its business model.
This entire PR statement from Zuckerberg appears to have been written by the PR team, may be even the same one Oscar Munoz uses at United Airlines because the wording so similar!
Zuckerberg signed off with a message of aspiration: “I want to thank all of you who continue to believe in our mission and work to build this community together. I know it takes longer to fix all these issues than we’d like, but I promise you we’ll work through this and build a better service over the long term.”
Remember Oscar’s comment about dragging a passenger of the plane about how this doesn’t represent who we are, and “that’s my promise”. Uh huh, fluffy PR speak. Clues that FB still doesn’t get it.
The company says it’s ‘outraged’ over Cambridge Analytica’s actions, but it doesn’t want to stop selling access to your information
In fact, all Zuckerberg said was “sorry”, made “mistakes”, and we take it “seriously”. Not a single action item indicates he has a clue. Indeed, FB is spending $1 million to fight a California initiative that would require European like data transparency from tech companies.
The full scale of their pivotal work in Trump’s election win
How they avoid Congressional investigations into their foreign clients
Setting up proxy organisations to feed untraceable messages onto social media
Using a secret email system where messages self-destruct and leave no trace
Cambridge Analytica’s involvement in the “Defeat Crooked Hilary” brand of attack ads
Cambridge Analytica is claiming they threw the election for Trump, using potentially stolen personal data on 50 million Americans and social media propaganda.
I am thinking a very large number of Americans may want to consider deleting their Facebook accounts.
Facebook actually did that – they have disabled the Facebook account of Christopher Wylie who blew the whistle on the personal data collection done by Cambridge Analytica.
I expect to find my own Facebook account suspended for having spent years warning about the dangers of social media for propaganda messaging.