October 26, 2021

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What do we know about whistleblower Francis Hogan?

(CNN Business) – The leaks of the former Facebook employee sparked a very serious study in the company’s history, revealing its identity on Sunday night.

Francis Hogan, a former Facebook product manager who has worked at several large technology companies, appeared in public on the “60 Minutes” show.

Haujan will testify before a U.S. Senate subcommittee on Tuesday. This is all we know about her so far.

Background

Hogan grew up in the Iowa Caucasus or Caucasus with his parents, according to his personal website. That experience sparked “strong pride in democracy and responsibility for citizen participation”, the website adds.

After studying Electrical and Computer Engineering and pursuing an MBA, Hookan began working at various technology companies, including Google, Pinterest and Yelp, starting in 2006. He specializes in “algorithmic product management” and, according to his prepared testimony received by CNN on Monday, has worked on a number of ranking mechanisms that Facebook uses to organize its main news source. He is due to appear before the Senate Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Security and Data Protection on Tuesday.

“Having worked at four major technology companies that run different types of social media, I was able to compare how each company faces and compares different challenges,” he wrote in his prepared testimony.

Disappointment on Facebook

Pandora’s box sinking into Facebook, according to an expert 1:38

Hu Jen, 37, joined Facebook in 2019 to work on civic integration, including “issues related to honesty and misinformation.” Those issues have been highlighted by critics on Facebook and other social media organizations, especially the corona virus epidemic and the 2020 US presidential election.

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He said in his “60 Minutes” interview that Haujan joined the work on Facebook to deal with misinformation. But he explained that his feelings about the company began to change when the company decided to disband its civic integration group after the election.

He suggested that the decision, in part, allowed the use of the platform to organize the January 6 riots in US Capitol.

Facebook claims that the work of the Civil Integrity Group was disbanded and distributed to other sections, and that company executives have denied allegations that it was the cause of the disruption at Capitol Hill.

Hogan’s revelations are also significant, as lawmakers, regulators and activists around the world have repeatedly criticized the company for not being able to protect hundreds of millions of users.

“I joined Facebook … because someone close to me has intensified online,” he told the Senate subcommittee in his comments. “I was forced to take a serious role in creating a better, less toxic Facebook.”

But over the course of two years, he said, Facebook is beginning to realize that it is not committed to ensuring that its products promote the public good.

“What I saw over and over again on Facebook was that there were conflicts of interest as to what is good for the public and what is good for Facebook, and Facebook chose to optimize for personal gain, such as making more money again.” He said “60 minutes.”

In a statement to the Senate Subcommittee on Tuesday, Hogan criticized Facebook for creating a system that would “increase sectarianism, extremism and polarization” around the world.

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“Facebook turned its profits into a $ 1 trillion company, including our security and the safety of our children,” he wrote. “That’s unacceptable.”

What did he do

Facebook wants money more than the public interest, the whistleblower 3:04

About a month ago, the company filed at least eight complaints with the Securities and Exchange Commission alleging that it was hiding an investigation into its shortcomings from investors and the public.

Hogan shared the document with the Wall Street Journal that Facebook was aware of a number of problems in its applications, including the negative effects of misinformation and the harm it does to women in particular.

“Every day, our teams need to balance the need to protect the potential of billions of people by keeping our site a safe and positive place,” Facebook spokeswoman Lena Pietch told CNN Business after the interview. 60 minutes. “

“We continue to make significant improvements to address the spread of misinformation and malicious content. We promote inappropriate content and it is simply not true that nothing should be done.”

According to a profile in The Wall Street Journal, Hagengun resigned from Facebook in April this year and left the company in May.

“If people hate Facebook for what I did, I failed,” he told the newspaper. “I believe in truth and harmony. We must accept reality. The first step is documentation.”

What’s next?

Teens analyze how social media affects them 2:41

On Tuesday, Hogan will testify before a Senate subcommittee chaired by Democratic Senator Richard Blument.

The subcommittee last week questioned Antigone Davis, Facebook’s global chief security officer, about the impact of its applications on younger users. Davis’ services, especially Instagram, can be more helpful than harmful to teenagers.

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“It does not mean those who do not [lo encuentran útil] It doesn’t matter to us. In fact, that’s why we’re doing this research, “he said.

Those lawmakers will now ask Hogan directly and have the opportunity to question her about what she experienced on Facebook.

The company vehemently rejected the claims of its former employees, which included a statement of more than 700 words on Sunday night, in which it revealed the “missing facts” of the “60 Minutes” section and interviewed “the company’s materials to report a false story about the research we do to improve our products.”

But his revelations seem to be causing more than a ripple effect on Facebook. The company has faced criticism from regulators and governments around the world for years, and its pressure is increasing every week.

Despite dealing with the continuing decline of Hougan’s revelations and the widespread disruption of its core services for several hours on Monday, Facebook sought to dismiss the Federal Trade Commission’s hopeless complaint accusing it of being a monopoly.

Hogan says the only way to hold Facebook accountable is to reveal the way she did its internal workings.

“I made progress because I recognized a terrifying fact: no one outside of Facebook knows what’s going on inside of Facebook,” he wrote to the Senate committee on Monday. “As long as Facebook operates in the dark, it is not responsible to anyone. And it will make decisions against the public interest.”

– Claire Duffy and Tony O’Sullivan of CNN Business contributed to this report.