A 2009 interview with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has surfaced during which he promised users’ information would never be shared without their consent.
Former CIA contractor Edward Snowden shared the BBC interview on Twitter, urging people to share it widely.
“The person who’s putting the content on Facebook always owns the information, that is why this is such an important thing,” Zuckerberg assured. “And why Facebook is such a special service that people feel a lot of ownership over.”
“This is their information. They own it,” the CEO reiterated.
“And you won’t sell it?” is asked point blank.
“No, of course not,” Zuckerberg replies.
“So just to be clear, you’re not going to sell or share any of the information on Facebook?” the BBC reporter followed up.
“What the terms say is we’re not going to share people’s information, except for with the people they’ve asked for it to be shared,” Zuckerberg responded.
The Facebook head has agreed to testify before Congress next month regarding how the British company Cambridge Analytica was able to gain access to personal data from 50 million Facebook users.
Zuckerberg has apologized for a “breach of trust” by his company in a full-page ad appearing in multiple newspapers in the United States and the United Kingdom over the weekend, CNN reported.
“This was a breach of trust, and I’m sorry we didn’t do more at the time,” he wrote. “We’re now taking steps to ensure this doesn’t happen again.”
In a lengthy March 21 Facebook post, Zuckerberg further explained, “We have a responsibility to protect your data, and if we can’t then we don’t deserve to serve you.”
“The good news is that the most important actions to prevent this from happening again today we have already taken years ago,” he continued. “But we also made mistakes, there’s more to do, and we need to step up and do it.”
CNN Money noted Facebook finds itself in a conundrum regarding the controversy.
“The scandal…highlights a problem that is built into the company’s DNA: Its business is data exploitation.”
“Facebook makes money by, among other things, harvesting user data and sharing it with app developers and advertisers.”
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