Facebook tries to discredit whistleblower, denies version of events
San Francisco, United States, Oct 5 (EFE) .- Several Facebook executives came out Tuesday to try to discredit former worker Frances Haugen after her statement before a United States Senate subcommittee, and denied that events in the company happen the way she described them.
Haugen, who previously leaked internal company documents to The Wall Street Journal, told senators that Facebook puts its benefits before the safety of users and conceals that its platforms are harmful to minors, foster social division and weaken democracy.
In a statement, Lena Pietsch, one of Facebook’s Political Communication Directors, said that since the signing they do not agree with the description Haugen made before the Senate and tried to discredit her version by saying the informant only worked at Facebook for two years.
“She only worked at Facebook for two years; she had no employees under her responsibility; she never attended a meeting with senior managers where decisions were made and she herself testified more than six times that she had not worked on the issues she spoke about,” Pietsch said.
Andy Stone, another of the company’s Political Communication directors said on Twitter, that Haugen “did not work on child safety issues or on Instagram or on research on these issues” and therefore “did not have direct knowledge” of the matter.
Facebook spokesperson Joe Osborne also said the informer “does not know” what she is talking about, in this case referring to the accusation the social network deactivated all prevention measures it had applied before elections just after the polls last year.
“That is incorrect. We maintained several measures until Jan. 6, and added new ones after the violence that took place in the Capitol,” Osborne said, referencing the assault on the headquarters of the US Congress by thousands of supporters of President Donald Trump.
Haugen painted a ruthless portrait of the company in her Senate testimony because she allegedly realized a “devastating truth” while she was working there: that Facebook hides information from the public and governments.
“The documents I have provided to congress prove Facebook has repeatedly misled the public about what its own research reveals about the safety of children, the efficacy of its artificial intelligence, and its role in spreading divisive and extremist messages,” she said. EFE