Facebook’s 15th anniversary

Feb. 14, 2019, 1:00 a.m.

As a parody on a passage in the “Good Book”: “What profit a man when he gaineth access to social media but loses his privacy?”

A recent editorial in the SJ Mercury exposed the latest egregious actions of Facebook, which targeted young minors by paying them $20 per month to capture everything they do on their phones. Facebook offers a weak defense of its actions, claiming they were provided informed consent by their young users. Really? Are children as young as 13 mature enough to make such decisions? $20 is a cheap way to invade a youngster’s privacy. The stolen information may haunt them for the rest of their lives. This offer was introduced as early as 2013 – Facebook’s actions went under the radars of parental control.

This mimics the wicked actions of tobacco companies attempting to get young people hooked on their products by handing out free packs of cigarettes.

This makes Zuckerberg’s appearance in Congress, feigning openness and sincerity,  a complete sham. Celebrating its 15th anniversary, Facebook has effectively hijacked many of the world’s eyeballs with its social media platform, photo-sharing app Instagram and messaging product WhatsApp.

Around two-thirds of Americans move around like zombies using Facebook’s social network product. All these new trends in making “friends” is beautifully encapsulated in Roger McNamee’s forthcoming book, “Zucked.”

Many accuse Facebook of fanning teenage narcissism, short attention spans, anxiety, depression and insecurity. A staggering 59% of Americans claim they have been bullied or harassed online. Facebook’s business model is simple – mine users’ private data and sell it to companies for profit.

The Cambridge Analytica fiasco is a prime example of how customers’ data was used for political purposes and very likely impacted the 2016 election in Trump’s favor. The ongoing threats of breaching of privacy scream of government oversight. Thus far the government has chosen to give Facebook a free pass.

Tejinder Uberoi

84 Stuart Ct, Los Altos, CA 94022.

(650) 796-2600

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