Facebook has a monopoly on the social network. It has more than 2 billion users. It also owns WhatsApp, Instagram, and Messenger, each having more than 1 billion active users. Hughes co-founded Facebook along with Mark Zuckerberg and Dustin Moskovitz in 2004 at Harvard. In 2007 he quit Facebook. Later he worked as a social media strategist for Barack Obama.

Why break the social network?

The social network is a monopoly. There is no competition and hence, have no accountability. Now the government needs to intervene and break it. Co-founder Hughes expressed he is surprised that how Facebook compromised with security for gaining growth.

Hughes is not the only one asking for a break-up of Facebook. Many lawmakers also called federal privacy regulations and anti-trust action to break-up the big companies who hold the monopoly. Senator Elizabeth Warren also promised to break-up Facebook, amazon.com, and Google if elected as president. She will also promote competition in the tech sector.

Mark Zuckerberg introducing the company’s 10-year roadmap at a Facebook conference in 2016.CreditEric Risberg/Associated Press

Facebook Scandals-

  1. Russians exploited the platform to spread misinformation and tried to tamper the 2016 US elections. 13 Russia’s Internet Research Agency employees created fake US Instagram and Facebook accounts to spread misinformation. Not only Facebook, other tech giants like YouTube and Twitter were also involved.
  2. The company has also been blamed for spreading fake news on Rohingya Muslims, who have been slaughtered. Report having human rights failure on Facebook was issued in Myanmar. After the anti-Muslim violence in Sri-Lanka, the government ordered internet providers to shut down Facebook and WhatsApp.
  3. Political data firm, Cambridge Analytica, accessed around 87 million user data are used without their consent before the 2016 presidential elections. Facebook also gave developers access to user data and spend a year searching for lost data.
  4. In September 2018 Hackers broke into around 30 million Facebook accounts. This allowed hackers to take over the accounts. This helped to gain access to the third party apps which needs Facebook login.
  5. Facebook also had data-sharing agreements with Chinese manufacturers like Huawei, Oppo, and Lenovo. It also had ties with more than 50 app developers who have the privilege of accessing user data.
  6. On December 14, 2018, the Facebook breach exposed user photos to the developers. A bug exposed more than 6.8 million user photos to the developers. The developers can also see the uploaded and not posted photos.
  7. Hughes remarked Mark Zuckerberg as a good person, but disappointed how he allowed himself to share user data for growth. He also expressed his disappointment in himself and his team members, failing to see the changes the news feed algorithm can bring forth. It can affect culture, elections and empower political leaders.

The Consequence

Facebook is going to pay a fine of $3 billion to $5 billion for failing to follow the 2011 consent decree. It prohibited Facebook from sharing any kind of information against the consent of the user. Scandals have become the new norm of Facebook. New scandals emerge every week. After breaking up, Hughes requested the government to create a special bureau to overlook the activities of the tech companies and ensure privacy is maintained.