“If a business is built on misleading users, on data exploitation, on choices that are no choices at all, it does not deserve our praise.”
From CNBC’s “Apple CEO links Facebook’s business model to real-world violence” posted Thursday:
Apple CEO Tim Cook on Thursday linked Facebook’s business model using data to serve targeted ads with real-world consequences, such as violence or reducing public trust in vaccines.
Cook’s speech, at a data privacy conference in Brussels, did not mention Facebook by name, but the social media company was clearly a target of the Apple CEO’s warning.
“If a business is built on misleading users, on data exploitation, on choices that are no choices at all, it does not deserve our praise. It deserves reform,” Cook said.
Cook also criticized recommendation algorithms that suggest extremist groups to users, as Facebook has been under fire for doing. On Wednesday, Facebook said it would stop automatically recommending political groups permanently.
Cook also said that he believes that some companies reward content that could undermine public trust in vaccinations to boost engagement.
“At a moment of rampant disinformation and conspiracy theories juiced by algorithms, we can no longer turn a blind eye to a theory of technology that says all engagement is good and the longer the better,” Cook said.
Cue the video (Cook starts at the 3:50 minute mark):
My take: Things are getting real. Meanwhile, Mark Zuckerberg is whining about a bump in the road in Facebook’s advertising juggernaut.