By BARBARA ORTUTAY and KELVIN CHAN, AP Business Writers
Amid fallout from the Facebook Papers paperwork supporting claims that the social community has valued monetary success over person security, Facebook on Monday reported larger revenue for the latest quarter.
The firm’s latest present of monetary energy follows each an avalanche of experiences on the Facebook Papers — an unlimited trove of redacted inner paperwork obtained by a consortium of news organizations that included The Associated Press — but additionally of Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen’s testimony to British lawmakers.
Facebook mentioned its internet earnings grew 17% within the July-September interval to $9.19 billion, or $3.22 per share, , buoyed by sturdy promoting income. That’s up from $7.85 billion, or $2.71 per share, a 12 months earlier. Revenue grew 35% to $29.01 billion. Analysts, on common, have been anticipating earnings of $3.19 per share on income of $24.49 billion, in line with a ballot by FactSet.
Facebook shares rose $3.90, or 1%, to $332.43 in after-hours buying and selling. It had closed up 1% for the day.
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Haugen instructed a British parliamentary committee Monday that the social media big stokes on-line hate and extremism, fails to guard kids from dangerous content material and lacks any incentive to repair the issues, offering momentum for efforts by European governments engaged on stricter regulation of tech firms.
While her testimony echoed a lot of what she instructed the U.S. Senate this month, her in-person look drew intense curiosity from a British parliamentary committee that’s a lot additional alongside in drawing up laws to rein within the energy of social media firms.
Haugen instructed the committee of United Kingdom lawmakers that Facebook Groups amplifies on-line hate, saying algorithms that prioritize engagement take folks with mainstream pursuits and push them to the extremes. The former Facebook knowledge scientist mentioned the corporate may add moderators to forestall teams over a sure dimension from getting used to unfold extremist views.
“Unquestionably, it’s making hate worse,” she mentioned.
Haugen mentioned she was “shocked to listen to lately that Facebook desires to double down on the metaverse and that they’re gonna rent 10,000 engineers in Europe to work on the metaverse,” Haugen mentioned, referring to the corporate’s plans for an immersive on-line world it believes would be the subsequent huge web pattern.
“I used to be like, ‘Wow, are you aware what we may have completed with security if we had 10,000 extra engineers?’” she mentioned.
Facebook says it desires regulation for tech firms and was glad the U.Ok. was main the best way.
“While we’ve guidelines towards dangerous content material and publish common transparency experiences, we agree we’d like regulation for the entire trade so that companies like ours aren’t making these selections on our personal,” Facebook mentioned Monday.
It pointed to investing $13 billion (9.4 billion kilos) on security and safety since 2016 and asserted that it’s “nearly halved” the quantity of hate speech over the past three quarters.
Haugen accused Facebook-owned Instagram of failing to maintain kids underneath 13 — the minimal person age — from opening accounts, saying it wasn’t doing sufficient to guard children from content material that, for instance, makes them really feel dangerous about their our bodies.
“Facebook’s personal analysis describes it as an addict’s narrative. Kids say, ‘This makes me sad, I really feel like I don’t have the flexibility to regulate my utilization of it, and I really feel like if I left, I’d be ostracized,‘” she mentioned.
The firm final month delayed plans for a children’ model of Instagram, geared towards these underneath 13, to handle issues in regards to the vulnerability of youthful customers. Haugen mentioned she nervous it might not be potential to make Instagram protected for a 14-year-old and that “I sincerely doubt it’s potential to make it protected for a 10-year-old.”
She additionally mentioned Facebook’s moderation methods are worse at catching content material in languages aside from English, and that’s an issue even within the U.Ok. as a result of it’s a various nation.
“Those individuals are additionally dwelling within the U.Ok. and being fed misinformation that’s harmful, that radicalizes folks,” Haugen mentioned. “And so language-based protection is not only a good-for-individuals factor, it’s a nationwide safety situation.”
Pressed on whether or not she believes Facebook is essentially evil, Haugen demurred and mentioned, “I can’t see into the hearts of males.” Facebook just isn’t evil, however negligent, she recommended.
“It believes in a world of flatness, and it received’t settle for the results of its actions,” pointing to its mammoth one-level, open-plan company workplace as an embodiment of the philosophy.
It was Haugen’s second look earlier than lawmakers after she testified within the U.S. in regards to the hazard she says the corporate poses, from harming kids to inciting political violence and fueling misinformation. Haugen cited inner analysis paperwork she secretly copied earlier than leaving her job in Facebook’s civic integrity unit.
The paperwork, which Haugen offered to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, allege Facebook prioritized earnings over security and hid its personal analysis from traders and the general public. Some tales primarily based on the recordsdata have already been revealed, exposing inner turmoil after Facebook was blindsided by the Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol riot and the way it dithered over curbing divisive content material in India. More is to return.
Representatives from Facebook and different social media firms plan to talk to the British committee Thursday.
U.Ok. lawmakers are drafting an internet security invoice calling for establishing a regulator that might maintain firms to account in the case of eradicating dangerous or unlawful content material from their platforms, resembling terrorist materials or youngster intercourse abuse pictures.
Haugen is scheduled to fulfill subsequent month with European Union officers in Brussels, the place the bloc’s government fee is updating its digital rulebook to raised shield web customers by holding on-line firms extra liable for unlawful or harmful content material.
Under the U.Ok. guidelines, anticipated to take impact subsequent 12 months, Silicon Valley giants face an final penalty of as much as 10% of their international income for any violations. The EU is proposing an identical penalty.
See full protection of the “Facebook Papers” right here: https://apnews.com/hub/the-facebook-papers
Associated Press author Marcy Gordon in Washington contributed to this report.
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