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‘Facebook products harm children, stoke division’: Top quotes from Frances Haugen’s testimony

Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen testified before the U.S. Congress on Tuesday, telling lawmakers the social media giant knew its apps were harming the mental health of some young users.

By: Reuters |
Updated: October 5, 2021 9:41:49 pm
Former Facebook employee and whistleblower Frances Haugen testifies during a Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation hearing entitled 'Protecting Kids Online: Testimony from a Facebook Whistleblower' on Capitol Hill, in Washington, U.S., October 5, 2021. (Reuters)

Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen testified before the US Congress on Tuesday, telling lawmakers the social media giant knew its apps were harming the mental health of some young users.

Here are some comments from the committee hearing:

FRANCES HAUGEN, FACEBOOK WHISTLEBLOWER

* “I’m here today because I believe Facebook’s products harm children, stoke division and weaken our democracy.”

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*”There is no one currently holding Mark (Zuckerberg, the Facebook chief executive) to account. The buck stops with Mark.”

*”Yesterday we saw Facebook taken off the internet. I don’t know why it went down, but I know that for more than five hours, Facebook wasn’t used to deepen divides, destabilize democracies and make young girls and women feel bad about their bodies.”

US SENATOR AMY KLOBUCHAR, DEMOCRAT FROM MINNESOTA

“When they allowed 99% of violent content to remain unchecked on their platform including the lead-up to the Jan. 6 insurrection, what did they do? Now we know Mark Zuckerberg was going sailing.”

Former Facebook employee and whistleblower Frances Haugen arrives to testify during a Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation hearing entitled ‘Protecting Kids Online: Testimony from a Facebook Whistleblower’ on Capitol Hill, in Washington, US, October 5, 2021. Reuters)

US SENATOR ROGER WICKER, REPUBLICAN FROM MISSISSIPPI

“Children of America are hooked on their product. There is cynical knowledge on behalf of these Big Tech companies that this is true.”

US SENATOR MARSHA BLACKBURN, REPUBLICAN FROM TENNESSEE

“The research was Facebook’s internal research. So they knew what they were doing, they knew where the violations were and they know they are guilty.”

US SENATOR RICHARD BLUMENTHAL, DEMOCRAT FROM CONNECTICUT

“The damage to self-interest and self-worth inflicted by Facebook today will haunt a generation.”

“Big Tech now faces the Big Tobacco jaw-dropping moment of truth.”

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