Facebook disabled a number of security measures during last year’s US presidential election, a whistleblower claims in the US current affairs program 60 Minutes on Sunday. According to her, it allowed the Capitol in Washington to be stormed.
The whistleblower is Frances Haugen, who, according to her LinkedIn profile, has worked as a product manager at Facebook for more than two years. She also had similar features at tech companies Google, Pinterest and Yelp.
According to Haugen, a change in the algorithm in 2018 caused more division among Facebook users. The platform would not have modified that algorithm, because users would return more often. This allowed more ads to be sold.
Haugen says she has seen many of the problems with other social media companies, but that with Facebook it was substantially worse than anything she had seen before.
Facebook denies that the social medium contributed to the Storming of the Capitol in Washington on January 6, 2021. Director Nick Clegg called the claim Sunday in an interview with CNN ridiculous. He made that statement before the television appearance of the whistleblower.
Clegg stressed that Facebook removed billions of fake accounts last year and that a social medium is unable to increase the existing polarization.
According to him, the responsibility for the January 6 uprising was “clearly with people who incited and encouraged violence even further, including then president Donald Trump”.