New Brunswick Tribune

Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Frances Haugen, a Facebook whistleblower, does have a book deal

Frances Haugen, a Facebook snitch, has a book deal.

Key takeaways:

  • The former Facebook manager, who shocked the world this fall by leaking tens of thousands of internal documents, has signed a book deal.

A book deal has been signed by the former Facebook manager, who shocked the world this fall by leaking tens of thousands of internal documents and accusing her former employer of being more concerned about money than public safety.

On Thursday, Frances Haugen’s planned memoir, “offering a critical examination of Facebook,” was acquired by Little, Brown, and Company. The book’s title and publication date have yet to be determined. The financial details were kept under wraps.

“I realized a devastating truth during my time at Facebook: almost no one outside of Facebook knows what goes on inside of Facebook.” In a statement, Haugen said, “They operate in the dark.”

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“They win by keeping their systems closed to outside oversight and transparency and by shrouding their operations in secrecy and public relations spin. I came forward because I think every human being is entitled to the dignity of truth. The truth is that Facebook obtains its astronomical profits by jeopardising our safety. 

But it doesn’t have to be this way; these issues can be resolved. We can have social media that we enjoy while also bringing out the best in people. This book, I hope, will point us in the right direction.”

The rise of Haugen has been interpreted as a sign of a new wave of Big Tech whistleblowers. In October, Haugen testified before the Senate, alleging that the company had failed to make changes to Instagram despite internal research indicating that it was causing harm to some teens and had not done enough to combat hate speech and misinformation. 

Facebook Whistleblower Frances Haugen Has Book Deal - Bloomberg
Facebook Whistleblower Frances Haugen Has Book Deal. Image from Bloomberg

Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO of Facebook, has disputed her claims, calling them a “false picture” of the company, but agreeing that the government’s internet regulations need to be updated.

Haugen, a data expert with an electrical and computer engineering degree from Olin College and a master’s degree in business from Harvard, is a native of Iowa City, Iowa. 

She had 15 years of experience working for tech companies such as Google and Yelp before being hired by Facebook in 2019 as the lead product manager for its civic integrity unit.

Facebook shuttered its civic integrity unit after the November 2020 election, a move Haugen says convinced her that the company couldn’t be trusted to “actually invest what needs to be invested in keeping Facebook from being dangerous.” She left Facebook in May, but not before spending weeks reviewing documents and copying them.

Source: CP24 News

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