All the interesting bits from Zuckerberg’s Facebook senate testimony

Mark Zuckerberg made his first senate hearing appearance today to answer for what has rapidly become a maelstrom of privacy issues in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal. There was plenty to digest but if watching senate hearings aren’t your bag then here’s a quick list of the big hits.

  • Facebook *doesn’t* tap your phone and listen to everything your phone’s microphone can pick up. Zuck was pretty emphatic about this one.
  • Palmer Lucky wasn’t fired for the pro-Trump media funding scandal however no details about *why* he was fired were offered in return to the questioning. Zuckerberg saying it was a “personal” issue not for that forum but essentially confirming he was fired.
  • When questioned about Facebook being a monopoly Zuckerberg named every big name in the tech sphere but failed to rule out the fact the company has a firm grip on the market, pointing out it has elements that overlap the likes of Apple, Google, et al.
  • We could get a paid version of Facebook in the future. When asked about a previous statement made by Zuckerberg that Facebook would always be “free”, he today said there would always be a free version however there is a possibility of a subscription variation.

A new bill was introduced almost immediately after the hearing was complete aimed squarely at restricting data collection and methods for authorising them to be enforced in the US by the FCC. Call the CONSENT Act (Customer Online Notification for Stopping Edge-provider Network Transgressions), the bill outlines the requirement of explicit opt-in consent from users before their data can be shared or sold to anyone.