Washington, United States | Tuesday, the day after a major blackout of Facebook freezing its platforms, will experience another difficult day, exposing the abuses of the parliamentary hearing group and asking the US Congress to control it better.
Also read: Lots of puzzle for Quebec SMEs
“For more than five hours yesterday (…), Facebook was not used to disintegrate, destabilize democracy and help young women and young women feel bad in their bodies,” Engineer Francis Hogen told the Senate Committee at the beginning of her hearing.
See live evidence:
- Listen to interviews with Patrick Matthew, a computer security expert and co-founder of Hack Fest, and Jean-Hughes Roy, professor at UQAM Media School, on QUB Radio:
The 37-year-old computer scientist points to a massive failure to shut down two social networks and two messengers of Menlo Park (California), the giant of Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp and the messenger.
The disruption, which lasted for nearly seven hours, was “huge” by DoundTector, a site that collects user reports, affecting “billions” of users.
This is due to a “wrong configuration change” of routers that “coordinates traffic between servers”, Facebook said in a statement posted on its site Monday through Tuesday night. The technical interruption has “cascading effects”.
The event temporarily halted the vast ecosystem created around Facebook and its platforms, reminding them of their ubiquitous 3.5 billion users worldwide, if necessary.
Instagram remained the most downloaded application in the United States on Monday, followed by Facebook and data analytics firm CensorTower, which removed both platforms from TickTalk.
Not only recovering from this unprecedented departure, Facebook will be in the headlines for the third day in a row with the Francis Hougan hearing before the US Senate Commerce Committee.
The former product manager, who left the company on Sunday, showed his face for the first time in an interview aired on the CBS channel and had already made the first attack on his former boss.
“I’m here today because I believe Facebook products are hurting children, sowing division and undermining our democracy,” Francis Hougen said at the start of his trial.
The engineer relied on the two years she spent in the company, but also on the thousands of papers she took last spring.
A piece already submitted by the Wall Street Journal in mid-September shows that Facebook researchers have highlighted the fact that some teenage Instagram users are less comfortable with their bodies than ever before.
Francis Hougan has also confirmed that Facebook has removed filters against misinformation to promote an increase in the number of visits to its platforms after the US presidential election. It was later used by Internet users to prepare for a January 6 rally in Washington, which led to an intrusion on Capital.
“Facebook has become a trillion-dollar company, paying for its profits with our security, including the safety of our children,” she added.
“I took the initiative because I realized the frightening truth: no one outside of Facebook knows what’s going on inside of Facebook.
Facebook has stepped up efforts to contain the blaze. “If we were a safety-conscious, profit-oriented company, we would not be able to do this kind of research,” Facebook Vice President Monica Bickert said Monday about internal studies showing the mental health of some young women affected by Instagram.
Regarding the impact of the social network on the political climate, according to Francis Hougan, Facebook has not done enough to control it, with another vice president, Nick Clegg, ruling on Sunday that it is too easy to ask for a technical explanation for certification politics. United States “.
Facebook’s stake is in its image, already with repeated scandals, especially the Cambridge Analytics affair in 2018, and these revelations prompted Congress to try to legitimize it.
The company “does not know how to control itself,” White House spokeswoman Jen Saki said Monday. These documents “prove (…) concerns about the power that network giants have amassed”.