Frances Haugen, a former member Facebook's civic misinformation team, testified before Congress on October 5. Haugen stated that in her almost two years with Facebook, she has seen the company prioritise growth to the detriment its users and the society as a whole. It ignored warnings from its own researchers about potential dangers. She had also gathered thousands upon thousands of pages of documents from internal sources, now known collectively as The Facebook Papersto support her assertion.
These documents were made public to the Securities and Exchange Commission and provided to Congress by Haugens legal counsel in redacted form. A consortium of news agencies, including WIRED, have reviewed the redacted versions.
The Wall Street Journal already published several stories that were based on these internal reports. The documents are remarkable for their insight into Facebook's many failings. They show how employees discovered solutions to deep-seated issues but were not heard; how some researchers left the company feeling deeply disillusioned; and how the negative effects of growth at any cost were most felt in developing countries.
These stories are based on reports and posts from Facebook employees. The sheer volume of documents and the ripples already felt at Facebook, they're unlikely to be the last word. WIRED and other news outlets continue to dig through the documents, so expect more revelations, as well as any reverberations, in the coming weeks.
Documents from internal research can be used to help solve the company's most difficult problems.
The badges of former researchers of the company offer the final thoughts of the disillusioned.
Both human reviewers and AI filters are unable to manage the content flood or understand the differences between Arabic dialects.
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