Wrapping up Facebook’s worst year yet, chief executive Mark Zuckerberg admitted that he has no fix for the hate speech and election interference plaguing his company.
In a celebratory New Year’s post on the platform last week, the social media giant said his personal goals of 2018 had been focused on “preventing election interference, stopping the spread of hate speech and misinformation, making sure people have control of their information, and ensuring our services improve people’s well-being,” adding that progress had been made.
Running through a list of security advances and investments to safeguard the site – which has fallen under the scrutiny of the federal government as it threatens to regulate it – Zuckerberg revealed that he didn’t have all the answers.
“That doesn’t mean we’ll catch every bad actor or piece of bad content, or that people won’t find more examples of past mistakes before we improved our systems,” he said in the statement, changing his tone after noting the positives. “For some of these issues, like election interference or harmful speech, the problems can never fully be solved.”
Zuckerberg was attempting to take some of the heat off his business while shedding light on the better parts of his year, but not everyone appreciated the message.
“Nothing about selling our data without our consent I see,” one irked user commented. “I guess it’s just too deeply ingrained in Facebook’s ‘DNA.’”
Another demanded the site “stop playing with users data.”
“Trust me, you’ll still make scads of money.”
Last April, Zuckerberg testified before Congress in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal, in which the political consulting firm harvested data from millions of users for political and marketing purposes. The group was hired by President Donald Trump’s 2016 election campaign.
Despite the firestorm of controversy that enveloped Facebook last year, Zuckerberg said it will take time, noting that “we’ve built some of the most advanced systems in the world for identifying and resolving these issues, and we will keep improving over the coming years.”