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Home / Business / Facebook marks one-year anniversary of Cambridge Analytica scandal with ‘nightmare week’

Facebook marks one-year anniversary of Cambridge Analytica scandal with ‘nightmare week’



If this were not enough, this weekend marks the first anniversary of the Cambridge Analytica scandal that shocked the company: an anniversary that Facebook would surely love the world to forget.

All the problems that plagued Facebook and CEO Mark Zuckerberg for the year since then have collided: regulatory control, the struggle to control its platform and a growing executive exodus amid a bottomless pit of scandals.

"It was a nightmare week for Zuckerberg and Facebook," said Daniel Ives, an analyst who keeps track of Facebook for Wedbush. "Technological investors are becoming increasingly nervous" that "further turbulence may occur".

Facebook shares fell 4% in early trading on Friday before bouncing back a little. Facebook representatives did not immediately respond to a request for comment on this story.

Facebook started the year with a strong note. In January, the company recorded a record profit for the last three months of 201
8, sending a strong signal that its endless PR crises have not damaged its bottom line. In a conference call with analysts to discuss the results, Zuckerberg took note of himself. "We started to turn a corner," he said.

Now it seems more like Facebook has turned a corner and entered another wall.

While Facebook works to overcome the data privacy crises that plagued it in the last year, politicians and regulators continue to control the company. Reportedly, federal prosecutors are probing Facebook's data sharing offers with a number of big technology companies. The Federal Trade Commission is said to be negotiating with Facebook for a possible record fine. And European officials are apparently scrutinizing every move of the company.
Perhaps in an attempt to show the world that the company is truly reformed, Zuckerberg has written a long blog post about his plans to reposition Facebook as a "privacy-centered" platform. To get there, Zuckerberg said Facebook will highlight private, encrypted and ephemeral conversations through its products.

Still, these moves could only add turbulence on the Facebook bench. Chris Cox, chief product officer of Facebook and Zuckerberg's right-hand man, announced the intention to leave the company on Thursday. Both he and Zuckerberg alluded to the need for "leaders" who are enthusiastic about the new strategy.

Facebook also said that Chris Daniels, who was head of WhatsApp, is leaving the company. In the past few months, the company has lost its chief security officer, its chief policy and communications manager, both founders of Instagram and CEO of WhatsApp.

These titles, Ives said, show Facebook that continues to grapple with "the chain impact" from Cambridge Analytica.

  Facebook, YouTube and Twitter are struggling to tackle the New Zealand video shooting

[19659008] After the data scandal, Zuckerberg and other executives have repeatedly told politicians, investors and the press that Facebook was hiring thousands of content moderators and building artificial intelligence systems to protect the platform from propaganda, hate speech and violent videos.

But the limitations of this dual approach were evident on Friday during a massacre in a mosque in New Zealand. One of the shooters seems to have livestreamed the attack on Facebook for almost 17 minutes. Facebook said it had "quickly removed", but only after being alerted to the New Zealand police video. The copies of the video continued to appear on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter.
The news has once again provoked criticism that Facebook and other social media companies are not doing enough to suppress this type of content. At the very least, it serves as a strong reminder of something Zuckerberg has said in the past: protecting Facebook is a "never ending battle".

If this week is an indication, tidying up the Facebook house could also prove to be an endless battle.

Sherisse Pham contributed to this report.


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