Facebook is Killing People

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Before the weekend the White House took a stand against Facebook's role in creating, maintaining, and protecting America's deadly anti-vax cultures and their spread of misinformation in a strongly worded press conference. This was followed by President Biden stating to press that Facebook is "killing people" (true); Biden walked back and softened that sentiment the next day. It's beyond disappointing.

Facebook countered with a brag about a tiny percentage of Americans having seen pro-vaccine material on the site, and a post by the founder of Facebook's VPN app that was later revealed to be spyware that paid kids for their data: former Israeli cyberspy Guy Rosen's post chided the Biden admin and basically said everyone should thank Facebook for what little it has done.

NYT dutifully reported Facebook PR's whitewash, saying that the company has a "blind spot" and doesn't know the data, which is, of course, literally impossible. Fire those reporters. Former Facebook VP Brian Boland went on CNN to say yeah, Facebook totally has the data and knows everything about how many people they're killing.

juliacarriew: "One thing to try to resist w/ the Biden v Facebook anti-vaxx debate is Facebook's concerted efforts to keep everyone's memory incredibly short. Facebook was actively promoting anti-vaxxer groups to people searching for vaccine information in 2019"

Guardian: "How Facebook groups bring people closer together – neo-Nazis included!"

Former Israeli spy Guy Rosen is quite a piece of work:

Facebook has named the Fox as the VP of Chicken Welfare:

Facebook's "VP of Integrity" is the co-founder of the company that built the spyware for teenagers (remember when Facebook lost access to all their iOS apps because they broke their contract so they could steal data from users?).

Israeli Cyber Unit Veterans Help Facebook Destroy Competition: "Onavo was founded in 2011 by Guy Rosen and Roi Tiger, both veterans of the Israel Defense Forces secret cyber intel Unit 8200."

Unit 8200, you say? Yousef Munayyer:

The focus of the story around NSO now raises questions about this corporation, its surveillance technology being solid to abusive regimes and the fact that the Israeli government licenses these sales. But the involvement in the Israeli state in these practices and outcomes is not limited to licensing of a private corporation's sales. Rather, it plays a central role in the development, testing, and perfecting of this technology.

NSO was founded and is likely largely staffed by individuals who came through the Israeli Military's Unit 8200 which is responsible for intelligence collection and surveillance through signals intel, i.e. cyber espionage. Who do you think they are using these methods on?

Israel's surveillance of Palestinians is extensive and it treats Palestinians as a laboratory where its technology can be tested and perfected. What makes the Palestinian population unique is that as a non-citizen population ruled by the state, there are far fewer (almost none) limitations on violating their privacy.

Previously, previously, previously, previously.

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5 Responses:

  1. Patrick says:

    And then there's this goddamn bullshit where antivaxxers are evading content matching filters on Facebook the same way, y'know, terror groups have. Yay Facebook!

  2. Gianteye says:

    This is just another round in the sterile political cycle of scolding Facebook, pretending that something has been accomplished by waving a disapproving finger, and returning to business as usual. Sometimes they even get Mark to sit his narrow ass on a congressional booster seat so he can get dressed down in person. Cambridge Analytica, Myanmar, Pivot-to-Video, Libra, Free Basics, psychological experiments on users. Rinse and repeat.

    I assume Chuck Schumer is going to return the $50k in donations he got from FB and his daughter is going to resign from her Product Marketing Manager position there in protest. With $7MM in donations from FB, you'd figure the Dems would shy away from badmouthing them. That is, unless there's an understanding that the big talk and threats are simply for show and the money is going to have the final say on the question of actually regulating Facebook.

  3. Aidan Gauland says:

    The link with the text "Israeli Cyber Unit Veterans Help Facebook Destroy Competition" is broken. Looks like it's just the protocol part of the URL passed to the Wayback Machine that's incorrect. Manually modifying it got me a snapshot of what I can only assume is the right page.

  4. Norse says:

    The irony is that Facebook actually is killing people, or increasing morbidity among the general population. They will say or do anything as long as it suits the business of cultivating a dumb, neurotic, overly conscientious pool of consumers to increase the likelihood of an ad converting.

    • Dude says:

      It's the same strategy gun-makers use: "Listen, we just make a product - it's not our fault if that product is used in a way that gets someone killed! I mean, if you can prove that our product as integral to that person's death, then we'll maybe consider paying you off a decade later."

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