“More disclosures will follow,” said Tay, who self-proclaimed in 2014 as a whistleblower on US government surveillance practices. Haugen said last week that Facebook knows from his research that its apps, such as Instagram, are harming the mental health of some young users. Haugen also repeatedly saw during her time at the company that Facebook believed that profit was more important than social aspects.
Tay reports that criticism from Haugen in recent days has led to a “significant increase” in the number of (former) Facebook employees who have contacted his law firm and may want to act as whistleblowers themselves. Not only will his team want to try to do business with Facebook in the US, but legal action in France and Great Britain is also being considered. “There is a lot of interest in Europe,” Tay said.
Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook CEO, on Tuesday responded to Haugen’s criticism, saying it was “simply incorrect” that Facebook would put profit above user safety. In a lengthy statement on his Facebook account, he also denounced recent criticism about Facebook’s impact on the mental health of children and adolescents in particular.
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