Facebook’s conduct revealed in leaked documents is “pretty concerning,” said former Google boss Eric Schmidt, who called for companies in the tech industry to show more restraint.
Facebook, now known as Meta Platforms, “went a little too far on the revenue side and not enough on the judgment side,” Schmidt said in an interview on Bloomberg Television. “You can see that from the Facebook leaks that have been occurring.”
Facebook “knew what it was doing,” says former Google CEO Eric Schmidt.Credit:AP
The documents — shared with the US Securities and Exchange Commission and Congress by whistleblower Frances Haugen and obtained by the Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg and other media outlets — show that Meta struggled to contain hate speech and misinformation.
They also revealed that the company’s own staff, including internal researchers, faulted it for failing to stop the proliferation of groups that fomented the US Capitol attack on January 6. And internal studies spotlighted the potential risks of its Instagram photo-sharing app for teen girls. The company, valued at $US934 billion ($1.26 billion), rebranded itself as Meta last month.
“The disturbing thing is that people have said a long time ago that Facebook was doing this, but people said, ‘Well, they didn’t understand, or they didn’t measure it,’” Schmidt said. “And what we learned in those disclosures is that these companies — and Facebook in particular — knew what it was…