In an interview with CNN on March 27th, Facebook’s chief executive, Mark Zuckerberg, on the verge of the showdown over Facebook accountability, confirmed that he would be “happy” to testify before Congress.
He also emphasized that “Facebook testifies in Congress regularly, on a number of topics…What we try to do is to send the person at Facebook who will have the most knowledge about what Congress is trying to learn…typically people who whole job is in a [specific] area. I imagine, at some point, there will be a topic that I’m sole authority on, and I’ll be happy to [testify] then.”
Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley has invited CEOs from Facebook, Google, and Twitter to a hearing on data privacy on the second week of April. A Facebook spokesperson has declined that a hearing has been set, although there are rumors that it is to be scheduled on April 12th.
In the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal and political advertising, Facebook now enters the culmination of a privacy protection crisis, which led to the company’s stock nearing a bottom. According to CNN Money, Facebook plunged to its biggest drop in four years after losing $80 billion in market value. Playboy, SpaceX, and Tesla hit ‘delete’ on their Facebook pages over privacy concerns. In a statement from Playboy, “The recent news about Facebook’s alleged mismanagement of users’ data has solidified our decision to suspend our activity on the platform at this time. There are more than 25 million fans who engage with Playboy via our various Facebook pages, and we do not want to be complicit in exposing them to the reported practices”.
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