It is greatly to the credit of the parliamentary committee scrutinising the draft Online Safety Bill that it has invited Frances Haugen, the Facebook whistleblower, to give evidence to it.
As the committee chair, Damian Collins says, her firsthand account of life inside Facebook offers an essential insight into what the social media giant can and can’t do to intercept socially damaging material circulating online. Her testimony was as compelling and revelatory as it was during her earlier sessions with the US Congress.
On the fact of it, most of Ms Haugen’s statements lend credence to the generally perceived notion that Facebook lets down its users and wider society by putting profit before people. It is a notion rejected by Mark Zuckerberg. But Ms Haugen was clear in her testimony to the committee: “Anger and hate is the best way to grow on Facebook.”
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