Mark Zuckerberg has cashed in more than $1 billion in Facebook stock so far this year – roughly double his sales for all of 2020

Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook
Facebook CEOP Mark Zuckerberg in New York City on Friday, Oct. 25, 2019.

Mark Zuckerberg has cashed in over $1 billion worth of Facebook stock so far this year, according to data from 83 separate SEC filings.

That’s nearly double his total sales of just over $540 million for all of 2020. The Facebook co-founder and CEO retains a roughly 13% stake in his company after the sales.

In 2015, after the birth of his daughter, Zuckerberg pledged to give away 99% of his Facebook holdings to charity throughout his life.

In the last year alone, the Facebook co-founder has grown his fortune by an incredible $40 billion.

Zuckerberg became one of just eight centi-billionaires in the summer of last year following Facebook’s launch of an Instagram feature to compete with TikTok in the US.

According to data from Bloomberg, Zuckerberg is now the fifth wealthiest person on the planet, with a net worth of $113 billion. That’s equivalent to more than 0.5% of the United States’ annual GDP.

Facebook stock is up more than 12% this year, even with Zuckerberg’s sales, amid a bull run for equities.

Analysts also continue to be mostly bullish about the social media giant’s prospects. Facebook boasts 39 “buy” ratings, nine “neutral” ratings, and just two “sell” ratings from analysts.

Deutsche Bank analysts, led by Lloyd Walmsley, tagged Facebook with a “buy” rating and a $385 price target at the end of March, arguing the company is set to benefit from its e-commerce push and an increasing appetite for advertising amid the economic reopening.

The company has also recently moved toward the digital currency space with plans to launch a trial of its new digital currency, Diem, later this year.

Facebook attempted a move into digital currencies before with Libra, but regulators and critics squashed the effort.

Read the original article on Business Insider

From Mark Zuckerberg to Roz Brewer, here’s how corporate America responded to Derek Chauvin’s guilty verdict

Walgreens Boots Alliance CEO Roz Brewer, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Apple CEO Tim Cook
Walgreens Boots Alliance CEO Roz Brewer, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Apple CEO Tim Cook.

  • Derek Chauvin was found guilty of the murder of George Floyd on Tuesday.
  • Business leaders including Mark Zuckerberg, Tim Cook, and Roz Brewer responded to the verdict soon after.
  • Many said the verdict was only the beginning of the fight against institutional racism.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

After Derek Chauvin was found guilty of the murder of George Floyd on Tuesday afternoon, top US business leaders were quick to respond.

Many said that the ruling was only the beginning of the fight against institutional racism, and urged more action.

The CEOs of Apple and Dell shared quotes by civil-rights activist Martin Luther King Jr., while Zoom CEO Eric Yuan urged his staff to take care of their mental health.

Chauvin, a Minneapolis police officer at the time, knelt on Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes during an arrest. Chauvin was found guilty of second-degree murder, third-degree murder, and manslaughter.

Floyd’s death has led to increased scrutiny of police brutality and institutional racism around the world, and gave further international attention to the Black Lives Matter movement.

Read more: DEI execs are burning out amid the billion-dollar push to diversify corporate America: ‘It’s hard to be both the advocate and the abused’

Here’s how corporate America responded to Tuesday’s verdict.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Just minutes after the verdict was announced, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg posted that his thoughts were with Floyd, Floyd’s family, and those who knew him.

He added that the verdict was “part of a bigger struggle against racism and injustice.”

Facebook announced new content moderation rules on Monday in advance of the trial verdict, saying it would “remove content that praises, celebrates or mocks George Floyd’s death.”

Amazon

Jeff Bezos
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.

Amazon tweeted that the verdict was a “small, yet important victory in the larger fight against racism and social injustice.”

 

Apple CEO Tim Cook.

Tim Cook
Apple CEO Tim Cook.

Apple CEO Tim Cook tweeted a quote from Martin Luther King Jr.: “Justice for Black people will not flow into society merely from court decisions nor from fountains of political oratory.

“Justice for Black people cannot be achieved without radical changes in the structure of our society.”

 

Dell CEO and founder Michael Dell.

Michael Dell, Dell's founder and CEO
Michael Dell, Dell’s founder and CEO.

Michael Dell, the founder and CEO of Dell, shared a different quote by King.

 

Melinda Gates, chair of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Melinda Gates Bill Gates at Davos 2015
Melinda and Bill Gates.

Melinda Gates, who chairs the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation alongside husband Bill Gates, posted on LinkedIn that the verdict was “just the beginning.”

“As important as it was, this verdict was not justice,” she said. “If George Floyd had justice, he would be alive today.”

 

The Business Roundtable

Wal-Mart CEO Doug McMillon addresses a business leader panel discussion as part of the U.S.-Africa Business Forum in Washington
Walmart CEO Doug McMillon, who chairs The Business Roundtable.

The Business Roundtable, a group representing the CEOs of top US companies including Walmart, P&G, Dow, and PayPal, urged the country to “take steps to address its long history of racial inequity in law enforcement.”

“Though today’s verdict is a step toward justice in this case, unarmed Black men and women continue to die in encounters with the police,” it said.

General Motors CEO Mary Barra

Mary Barra GM CEO
General Motors CEO Mary Barra.

General Motors CEO Mary Barra said that the verdict was a “step in the fight against bias and injustice,” but that “we must remain determined to drive meaningful, deliberate change on a broad scale.”

 

Walgreens Boots Alliance

Rosalind Brewer
Walgreens Boots Alliance CEO Roz Brewer.

Walgreens Boots Alliance posted statement on its website, saying that law enforcement officials must protect “all of us, at all times.”

People need to “pledge to do everything within our power to ensure that long-overdue, much-needed reforms are enacted to prevent future injustices,” the company said.

“Even with a verdict now handed down, we must never forget what this past year has taught us, and we must always keep alive the memory of George Floyd, and the countless victims who have suffered similar fates,” it said.

“The Centers for Disease Control has declared racism a public health threat, and for many African Americans and others in communities of color, it has definitely been life threatening,” it added.

Microsoft President Brad Smith

Brad Smith
Microsoft President Brad Smith.

Microsoft President Brad Smith said that “our nation has a long journey ahead before it establishes the justice and equity that Black Americans deserve.”

He added that “no jury can bring him back to life or reverse the pain and trauma experienced by his family and still felt across the country and around the world,” but that the verdict was “a step forward in acknowledging painful truths.”

Salesforce

marc benioff salesforce
Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff.

Salesforce tweeted that though the verdict was a “defining and important moment,” it “does not make up for so much loss and injustice experienced by the Black community.”

“George Floyd should be alive today,” it added.

 

Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson

Kevin Johnson Starbucks
Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson.

In a letter to US partners, Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson said that the verdict would “not soothe the intense grief, fatigue and frustration so many of our Black and African American partners are feeling.”

He said that, “while today’s verdict is a step forward in accountability, until we confront the ugly realities and root causes of what led us to this day, our people, our nation, will always fall short of their full potential.”

“We cannot sit on the sidelines as individuals nor as a company,” he added.

Zoom CEO Eric Yuan

Zoom Eric Yuan
Zoom CEO Eric Yuan.

Zoom CEO Eric Yuan said that Tuesday was “meaningful in the pursuit of justice, although Black communities continue to experience targeted acts of violence.”

In an note to staff, Zoom told employees to take care of their mental health and reach out to managers if they needed support.

 

Twitter

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey.JPG
Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey.

Twitter urged people to “continue to deepen our solidarity and our commitment to combating racial injustice.”

 

Lyft cofounder John Zimmer

john zimmer lyft
Lyft Co-Founder John Zimmer.

Lyft cofounder John Zimmer said that “this year has opened America’s eyes to the urgency with which we must act and stand up for communities of color.”

LinkedIn

Ryan Roslansky
LinkedIn CEO Ryan Roslansky.

LinkedIn said that “George Floyd should still be with us.”

“Today’s decision is important, but does not bring him back or diminish the acts of violence that the Black community continues to experience,” it added.

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Facebook capitalizes on social audio craze with voice recordings, podcast listening, and Clubhouse-like rooms

facebook live audio rooms audio tool
  • Facebook unveiled several new audio-based tools for interaction and creation on the platform.
  • They include live audio rooms (akin to Clubhouse) and “soundbites” for creating short audio clips.
  • CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced the new products via an audio chatroom on Discord.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Facebook is planning to launch a slate of audio-based tools in coming months as it strives to capture the growing hype around Clubhouse and other social-audio platforms.

CEO Mark Zuckerberg took to the platform Discord on Monday to share – in an audio-only chat room – that the company is introducing new tools allowing Facebook users to interact with audio content and creators to produce it. The new tools, as first reported by Vox, include a live-audio chat feature akin to Clubhouse, the buzzy audio-chat app in talks for a funding round that would value the company at $4 billion.

In addition to these Clubhouse-like “Live Audio Rooms,” Facebook will also debut a new format for users to share content. The feature, called “Soundbites,” will eventually allow all users create and share short audio clips, which Facebook says can be used for “for capturing anecdotes, jokes, moments of inspiration, poems, and many other things we haven’t yet imagined.” The new tool draws early similarities to the voice tweets capability Twitter debuted last summer.

Read more: Clubhouse only has about 35 employees. Meet the 13 executives and earliest employees behind the year-old startup in talks for a $4 billion valuation.

With Monday’s announcement, Facebook has laid out the groundwork for its vision to invest in “social audio,” the newest trend in social media in which new platforms have found success and interest. The most obvious success story is Clubhouse, the invite-only app that launched just over a year ago and found immediate success during the coronavirus pandemic and its effects on everyday social interaction. The app’s immediate popularity has brought the company more than $300 million in investments, and has spurred similar features from Twitter, Slack, Discord, LinkedIn, and Spotify (through its acquisition of Locker Room).

Still, Zuckerberg tried to pivot much of the news of the new products to Facebook’s creator audio tools, which he said would continue to “empower” users to create content.

“There are a lot of people who have something that’s really interesting they want to share. We want to make it so people can produce things they’re proud of easily with just a phone,” Zuckerberg said. “We’re building the product to give you an audio studio or recorder in your pocket.”

facebook soundbites audio tool

Facebook also announced Monday it would soon bring podcasts to the platform as part of its investment into audio content. Users will be able to discover and listen to podcasts directly on the Facebook app like they would on Apple Podcast or Stitcher. Zuckerberg also stressed that this new feature would benefit podcasters and creators by giving them access to a bigger audience. Podcasting has become a billion-dollar industry, with companies like Spotify investing big in the space, but Facebook is seemingly late to the game.

Facebook has gained the notorious role of copying new features and ideas from its competitors, the most notable example being its own version of Snapchat’s ephemeral Stories. Such accusations have also come from US lawmakers, who also have an ongoing antitrust investigation into the company. News that Facebook was first working on a Clubhouse-like feature came in February, just five days after Zuckerberg spoke as a guest on Clubhouse.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Mark Zuckerberg’s net worth has grown over $40 billion in the last year alone. Here’s how the 36-year-old Facebook CEO makes and spends his $114 billion fortune.

Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan
Priscilla Chan and Mark Zuckerberg.

  • Mark Zuckerberg’s fortune passed $100 billion last year, making him one of eight centi-billionaires.
  • Zuckerberg drives an affordable car and wears basic clothes, but appears to splurge on real estate.
  • Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, also invest in childhood education and medical research.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

It’s been a challenging year for Mark Zuckerberg.

He’s testified before lawmakers on multiple occasions, attempted to quash coronavirus misinformation on Facebook, and suspended President Donald Trump from the platform. And earlier this month, 533 million Facebook users’ personal data and phone numbers were leaked online.

At the same time, Zuckerberg is richer than he’s ever been. Last summer, after Facebook launched an Instagram feature to compete with TikTok in the US, Zuckerberg’s personal net worth reached over $100 million for the first time.

These days, his fortune has reached $114 billion.

Keep reading to learn more about how the Facebook cofounder makes and spends his centibillion-dollar fortune.

Taylor Nicole Rogers contributed to an earlier version of this story.

In May 2012, eight years after its founding, Facebook debuted on the New York Stock Exchange. At the time, it was the biggest technology IPO in history.

mark zuckerberg facebook ipo nasdaq
Facebook Inc. CEO Mark Zuckerberg is seen on a screen televised from their headquarters in Menlo Park moments after their IPO launch in New York May 18, 2012.

Source: Business Insider

Most of Zuckerberg’s fortune is derived from his 13% stake in Facebook. While Facebook spent more than $25 million on him in 2020 alone, his take-home pay is just $1.

Mark Zuckerberg

Source: Bloomberg, Business Insider

Despite his status as one of the richest tech moguls, the 36-year-old Harvard dropout leads a low-key lifestyle with his wife, Priscilla Chan, and their two young daughters.

Mark Zuckerberg Priscilla Chan

Like many other Silicon Valley stalwarts, Zuckerberg doesn’t dress in flashy suits – he keeps things simple in jeans, t-shirts, and sweaters. But they’re reportedly much more expensive than they look, retailing for hundreds, and even thousands, of dollars.

Mark Zuckerberg

Source: Business Insider, GQ

Zuckerberg is known for driving relatively inexpensive cars. He’s been seen in an Acura TSX and a Honda Fit, both of which are valued at or under $30,000.

Mark Zuckerberg in his car

Sources: Business Insider, CNBC

He’s also been spotted driving a black Volkswagen Golf GTI, a car that he bought well after making his fortune. That car would cost about $30,000 new.

Volkswagen Golf GTI

Source: Business Insider

But he has dropped serious cash on at least one sports car: an Italian Pagani Huayra that sells for about $1.3 million.

mark zuck pagani huayra
Mark Zuckerberg and a Pagani Huayra. Not Zuckerberg’s actual car.

Source: Business Insider; Yahoo

There’s one thing Zuckerberg doesn’t seem to mind splurging on: real estate. In May 2011, he bought a 5,000-square-foot home in Palo Alto for $7 million. He’s since tricked it out with a “custom-made artificially intelligent assistant.”

mark zuckerberg house home palo alto 4x3

Source: San Francisco Chronicle, CNBC

The next year, Zuckerberg began buying the properties surrounding his home, spending more than $30 million to acquire four homes, with plans to level them and rebuild.

mark zuckerberg

Source: San Francisco Chronicle, CNBC

He also owns a townhouse in the Mission District of San Francisco. He bought the 5,500-square-foot home in 2013 and proceeded to make over $1 million in renovations, including adding a greenhouse and remodeling the kitchen.

san francisco dolores park covid social distancing park
People are seen at Dolores Park in the Mission District in San Francisco in May 2020.

Source: Curbed San Francisco

In 2014, the billionaire’s real-estate portfolio jumped the Pacific when he spent $100 million on two properties on the island of Kauai: the Kahu’aina Plantation, a 357-acre former sugarcane plantation, and Pila’a Beach, a 393-acre property with a white-sand beach.

Kauai, Hawaii
A beach in Kauai, Hawaii.

Source: Business Insider, Forbes

But the couple’s presence in Hawaii has drawn backlash over the years: In 2016, Zuckerberg angered neighbors by constructing a 6-foot wall around his property, and in 2017, Zuckerberg filed suit against Hawaiian families who had legal-ownership claims on parcels of land within his property. Though he dropped the suit, residents accused him of “neocolonialism.”

Kauai, Hawaii
A rainbow at Shipwreck’s Beach in Kauai.

Source: Business Insider

Zuckerberg has also shelled out for two lakefront properties on Lake Tahoe, which cost a combined $59 million. One of the houses, called the Brushwood Estate, spans 5,233 square feet on six acres of land. The property features a guest house and a private dock.

Zuckerberg Tahoe house

Source: Business Insider, SF Gate

Between his two Lake Tahoe properties, Zuckerberg owns about 600 feet of private shoreline on Lake Tahoe’s west shore.

Zuckerberg tahoe house

Source: Business Insider, SF Gate

 

When Zuckerberg buys properties, he tends to buy the other homes surrounding it for privacy reasons, just as he did in Palo Alto.

Mark Zuckerberg

Source: Business Insider

 

Zuckerberg doesn’t appear to travel much for pleasure. But when he traverses the globe for work, Facebook foots the bill: Security for Zuckerberg and his family cost the company $23 million in 2020, according to the company’s most recent proxy statement.

Mark Zuckerberg security

Source: Business Insider

But Zuckerberg’s travel mostly ground to a halt in 2020. He appeared to spend a lot of his time in Hawaii, riding a $12,000 electric surfboard and kayaking with his family.

 

Source: Business Insider, Daily Mail

But ultimately, opulence and luxury are just a blip on Zuckerberg’s radar. In fact, his main priority seems to be giving his money away, rather than spending it.

mark zuckerberg

Zuckerberg has signed onto the Giving Pledge, joining Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, and over 200 other millionaires and billionaires who have vowed to donate the majority of their wealth to philanthropy. He plans to sell 99% of his Facebook shares during his lifetime.

bill gates mark zuckerberg friends

Source: Business Insider

Zuckerberg said in September 2017 that he planned to sell 35 to 75 million shares over the following 18 months to fund the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, totaling between $6 billion and $12 billion.

Mark Zuckerberg

Source: Business Insider

The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative is a philanthropic organization Zuckerberg founded with his wife in 2015 focused on “personalized learning, curing disease, connecting people, and building strong communities.” CZI has awarded roughly $2 billion in grants over the years.

Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan

Source: Business Insider, CZI

CZI is invested in tackling both local and global issues. In 2020, for example, the organization poured $4.2 million into a jobs program for residents of Kauai and committed $1 million to help the region battle the coronavirus. CZI has also contributed millions in the last year to causes like criminal justice reform and affordable housing.

chan zuckerberg initiative mark zuckerberg priscilla chan

Source: Business Insider, CZI

Zuckerberg and Chan have also poured billions into research focused on curing the world’s diseases by the end of the century. In order to accomplish this lofty goal, the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative launched a nonprofit called Biohub to start looking into the cure for disease, including research on genomics, infectious diseases, and implantable devices.

zuckerberg chan married

Source: Business Insider, Business Insider

Zuckerberg believes that Biohub will help speed up research to cure disease, telling The New Yorker in 2018 that “we’ll basically have been able to manage or cure all of the major things that people suffer from and die from today. Based on the data that we already see, it seems like there’s a reasonable shot.”

facebook ceo mark zuckerberg

Source: The New Yorker

Last August, the launch of a new Instagram feature designed to compete with TikTok sent both the company’s share price and Zuckerberg’s net worth to new heights. The move caused Zuckerberg’s net worth to exceed $100 million for the first time, making him one of only a few centi-billionaires on Earth. These days, he’s worth $114 billion.

mark zuckerburg
Zuckerberg.

Source: Bloomberg

Read the original article on Business Insider

Facebook’s top execs took home hefty bonuses in the second half of 2020, partially as a reward for the company’s ‘election integrity efforts’

Mark Zuckerberg at Georgetown University
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

  • Facebook executives got 110% bonuses in the second half of 2020, according to a new SEC filing.
  • The bonuses were partially tied to Facebook’s “election integrity” efforts.
  • CEO Mark Zuckerberg doesn’t participate in the employee bonus program.
  • Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s two lieutenants got a big pay day for their work around last year’s election: COO Sheryl Sandberg and CFO David Wehner got just shy of $1 million in bonus compensation for the second half of 2020.

Those bonuses, awarded at 110%, were at least partially tied to “election integrity efforts in connection with the U.S. 2020 elections,” according to an SEC filing from the company first spotted by The Information.

Ahead of the November 2020 elections, Facebook rolled out a number of measures intended to curb misinformation and promote voting.

The company added labels to all posts about voting that came from federal elected officials and candidates, it paused political ad buying for months, and opened an information center intended to inform users about voting laws. Those efforts were apparently considered a success if the bonus payouts are any indication.

Read more: Some Lululemon retail employees say there is an environment of ‘toxic positivity,’ where workers feel pressure to share personal information with managers and constant feedback can feel like bullying

In the years following the 2016 US presidential election, Facebook struggled with how to moderate speech and advertising from politicians and political campaigns.

CEO Mark Zuckerberg has remained steadfast in his argument that political advertising is equivalent to political speech, and that political speech shouldn’t be moderated by the social media giant.

“In a democracy it’s really important that people can see for themselves what politicians are saying so they can make their own judgments,” Zuckerberg said in a late 2019 interview with CBS This Morning cohost Gayle King. “I don’t think that a private company should be censoring politicians or news.”

Following the 2020 US election, as former President Donald Trump repeatedly insisted that the election had been “stolen” and Trump supporters stormed the US Capitol building, Facebook took the unprecedented step of outright banning Trump from its platforms.

“The shocking events of the last 24 hours clearly demonstrate that President Donald Trump intends to use his remaining time in office to undermine the peaceful and lawful transition of power to his elected successor, Joe Biden,” Zuckerberg said in January. “The risks of allowing the President to continue to use our service during this period are simply too great.”

Got a tip? Contact Insider senior correspondent Ben Gilbert via email (bgilbert@insider.com), or Twitter DM (@realbengilbert). We can keep sources anonymous. Use a non-work device to reach out. PR pitches by email only, please.

Read the original article on Business Insider

A Muslim advocacy group just sued Facebook for failing to remove hate-speech, and it’s the latest example of the tech’s patchwork polices that fail to crack down on Islamophobia

Mark Zuckerberg sheryl sandberg
Muslim Advocates sued Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg for allegedly misleading Congress on how adequately they remove hate speech.

  • An advocacy group sued Facebook for allegedly misleading Congress regarding hate speech moderation.
  • The suit claims Facebook failed to remove most anti-Muslim groups presented to them in 2017.
  • The Muslim Advocates suit underscores how tech platforms fail to moderate anti-Muslim content.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

A Muslim advocacy group this week sued Facebook for failing to curtail hate speech, part of tech’s broader problem stopping Islamophobic speech.

Civil rights group Muslim Advocates filed a suit against Facebook and four company executives in the District of Columbia Superior Court for lying to Congress about moderating hate speech.

Facebook executives have told Congress of their commitment to removing content that violate policies, including COO Sheryl Sandberg’s assertion to the Senate Intelligence Committee on Facebook and Foreign Influence that “when content violates our policies, we will take it down.”

Yet Muslim Advocates said the organization presented Facebook with a list of 26 groups that spread anti-Muslim hate in 2017, yet 19 of them are still active.

Read more: In a hopeful sign for tech diversity, Harlem Capital raised $134 million for its second fund, blowing by its target in just 6 months

The suit claims Facebook allowed a man threatening to kill Congresswoman Ilhan Omar to post “violent and racist content for years,” and that the company failed to remove a group called “Death to Murdering Islamic Muslim Cult Members” even after Elon University Professor Megan Squire brought it to Facebook’s attention.

“We do not allow hate speech on Facebook and regularly work with experts, non-profits, and stakeholders to help make sure Facebook is a safe place for everyone, recognizing anti-Muslim rhetoric can take different forms,” a Facebook spokesperson said in a statement to Insider. “We have invested in AI technologies to take down hate speech, and we proactively detect 97 percent of what we remove.”

In 2018, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg testified to Congress that the platform’s can fail to police hate speech due to its artificial intelligence. Hate speech has nuance that can be tricky for AI to identify and remove, especially in different languages, Zuckerberg said.

Zuckerberg once again addressed questions about moderation and automation at a March 2021 congressional hearing about misinformation. His testimony about how content moderation needs to take into consideration “nuances,” like when advocates make counterarguments against hateful hashtags, seemed at odds with Facebook’s admitted reliance on AI to do the job of moderating hate speech.

Peter Romer-Friedman, a principal at Gupta Wessler PLLC who helped file the suit and the former counsel to Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, said Congress cannot adequately oversee corporations that misrepresent facts to lawmakers.

Romer-Friedman said Facebook’s failure to remove a group that claimed “Islam is a disease” – which directly violates the company’s hate speech policies that prohibits “dehumanizing speech including…reference or comparison to filth, bacteria, disease, or feces” – is an example where the firm did not follow through on its promise to Congress to quell hate speech.

“It’s become all too common for corporate execs to come to Washington and not tell the truth, and that harms the ability of Congress to understand the problem and fairly regulate businesses that are inherently unsafe,” Romer-Friedman told Insider.

How Facebook and other tech firms are failing to address anti-Muslim hate speech

The suit highlight’s tech firms’ ongoing problem responding to anti-Muslim content online.

Rep. Omar, the first congressperson to wear a hijab or Muslim headscarf, called on Twitter to address the death threats she receives. “Yo @Twitter this is unacceptable!” she said in 2019.

An analysis by the Social Science Research Council analyzed more than 100,000 tweets directed at Muslim candidates running for office in 2018, and found Twitter was responsible “for the spread of images and words from a small number of influential voices to a national and international audience,” per The Washington Post.

The spread of anti-Muslim content extends far beyond Facebook and Twitter:

  • TikTok apologized to a 17-year-old user for suspending her account condemning China’s mass crackdown on Uighur Muslims.
  • VICE has reported Muslim prayer apps like Muslim Pro had been selling location data on users to the US military.
  • Instagram banned Laura Loomer, a “proud Islamophobe,” years after Uber and Lyft banned her for a series of anti-Muslim tweets following a terror attack in New York.

Sanaa Ansari, a staff attorney with Muslim Advocates, said there’s been “clear evidence” of incitement to violence against Muslims potentially due to unchecked hate speech on social media. In 2019, 16-minute livestream of a gunman attacking two mosques and killing 51 people in New Zealand was uploaded to Facebook and spread quickly to Youtube, Instagram, and Twitter.

“There have been multiple calls to arms to Muslims, there have been organized events by anti-Muslim supremacists and militias who have organized marches, protests at mosques in this country,” Ansari told Insider in an interview. “And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.”

Read the original article on Business Insider

Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp appear to be experiencing issues as thousands report outages

facebook instagram
Facebook owns WhatsApp and Instagram.

  • Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp appear to be experiencing outages for many users.
  • Facebook owns Instagram and WhatsApp.
  • DownDetector reports show the issues started just after 5 p.m. ET.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp appear to be experiencing outages that are preventing many users from accessing the platforms.

Reports on DownDetector surged after 5 p.m. ET, with users of all three social media platforms noticing outages. A total of 23 reports on DownDetector were issued for Facebook at 5:08 p.m., two reports under its baseline of 25, but that number jumped to 18,120 at 5:23 p.m., indicating the issue wasn’t isolated.

Facebook owns both Instagram and WhatsApp.

“Sorry, something went wrong,” read the generic Facebook error message seen by many. “We’re working on getting this fixed as soon as we can.”

Instagram and WhatsApp show a similar trend on the outage-tracking website. A total of 49 Instagram reports at 5:04 p.m. ET, 18 reports over its baseline of 31, quickly became 10,330 at 5:19 p.m. ET.

Instagram has resorted to other platforms in order to address user concerns. The photo-sharing platform confirmed the outages in a tweet saying, “Is your #instagramdown? We know some people are having issues right now. We’re working on it and hope to have everything running smoothly as soon as possible.”

WhatsApp saw four Downdetector reports at 5:05 p.m., which jumped to 69 at 5:20 p.m. and then to 424 at 5:35 p.m. The messaging service has a baseline of three reports.

Spokespeople for Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment on the outage reports.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Mark Zuckerberg and Tim Cook have feuded for years over user privacy and antitrust concerns. Here’s where their rivalry began and everything that’s happened since.

Tim Cook Mark Zuckerberg
Apple CEO Tim Cook, left, and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

  • Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Apple CEO Tim Cook have been adversaries for years.
  • They’ve traded barbs over how expensive Apple products are and the Cambridge Analytica scandal.
  • Now, Facebook is fighting back against Apple’s upcoming privacy feature.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

The long-standing feud between Mark Zuckerberg and Tim Cook appears to be raging on.

The two tech titans have been feuding since at least 2014, trading barbs over each other’s products and business models. But in recent months, their battle has escalated to public jabs, pointed ad campaigns, and even a possible legal dispute: The Information reported in January that Facebook is preparing an antitrust lawsuit against Apple, alleging that Apple put a choke-hold on third-party app developers.

Here’s when the grudge began, and everything that’s happened since.

The feud between Zuckerberg and Cook became public in 2014, when Cook lambasted Facebook’s business model.

Tim Cook

In September 2014, Cook gave an in-depth interview with Charlie Rose that touched on a range of topics, including privacy.

During the interview — which took place in the weeks following the infamous leaks of multiple female celebrities’ nude photos stored on their iCloud accounts — Cook espoused Apple’s commitment to privacy while denouncing the business models of companies like Google and Facebook. 

“I think everyone has to ask, how do companies make their money? Follow the money,” Cook said. “And if they’re making money mainly by collecting gobs of personal data, I think you have a right to be worried. And you should really understand what’s happening to that data.”  

Shortly after, Cook reiterated his stance in an open letter on Apple’s dedicated privacy site. 

“A few years ago, users of Internet services began to realize that when an online service is free, you’re not the customer. You’re the product,” Cook wrote. 

Cook’s comments rankled Zuckerberg, who called the claims “ridiculous” and blasted Apple products as being expensive.

mark zuckerberg 2010

In an interview with Time later that year, Zuckerberg was reportedly visibly irritated by Cook’s assertions. 

“A frustration I have is that a lot of people increasingly seem to equate an advertising business model with somehow being out of alignment with your customers,” Zuckerberg told Time’s Lev Grossman. “I think it’s the most ridiculous concept. What, you think because you’re paying Apple that you’re somehow in alignment with them? If you were in alignment with them, then they’d make their products a lot cheaper!”

Their squabble came to a head following the Cambridge Analytica scandal when Cook criticized Facebook’s actions.

Tim Cook

In 2018, a whistleblower revealed that consulting firm Cambridge Analytica harvested user data without consent from 50 million users. 

During an interview with Recode’s Kara Swisher and MSNBC’s Chris Hayes in the months following, Cook was asked what he would do if he was in Zuckerberg’s shoes

Cook responded: “What would I do? I wouldn’t be in this situation.”

Cook said that Facebook should have regulated itself when it came to user data, but that “I think we’re beyond that here.” He also doubled down on his stance that Facebook considers its users its product. 

“The truth is, we could make a ton of money if we monetized our customer — if our customer was our product,” Cook said. “We’ve elected not to do that.”

Zuckerberg hit back, calling Cook’s comments “extremely glib.”

facebook ceo mark zuckerberg

“You know, I find that argument, that if you’re not paying that somehow we can’t care about you, to be extremely glib. And not at all aligned with the truth,” Zuckerberg said during an interview on The Ezra Klein Show podcast.

He refuted the idea that Facebook isn’t focused on serving people and once again criticized the premium Apple places on its products. 

“I think it’s important that we don’t all get Stockholm Syndrome and let the companies that work hard to charge you more convince you that they actually care more about you,” he said. “Because that sounds ridiculous to me.”

Privately, Zuckerberg was reportedly outraged by Cook’s remarks – so much so that he ordered his employees to switch to Android devices.

Mark Zuckerberg security phone

In November 2018, The New York Times published a blockbuster report detailing the fallout from the Cambridge Analytica scandal. The Times reported that Cook’s comments had “infuriated” Zuckerberg, who ordered employees on his management team who used iPhones to switch to Android. 

Soon after the report published, Facebook wrote a blog post refuting some of the reporting by The Times — but not the Zuckerberg-Cook feud. 

“Tim Cook has consistently criticized our business model and Mark has been equally clear he disagrees. So there’s been no need to employ anyone else to do this for us,” Facebook wrote. “And we’ve long encouraged our employees and executives to use Android because it is the most popular operating system in the world.”

In August 2020, Zuckerberg jumped in the fray as Apple faced criticism over its App Store policies.

mark zuckerberg

During a company-wide meeting, Zuckerberg openly criticized Apple, saying it has a “unique stranglehold as a gatekeeper on what gets on phones,” according to a report from BuzzFeed News

Zuckerberg also said that the App Store blocks innovation and competition and “allows Apple to charge monopoly rents,” BuzzFeed reported. 

Apple has been facing antitrust scrutiny from Congress and has been strongly criticized by developers — most notably “Fortnite” creator Epic Games — for the 30% fee it takes from App Store purchases. Apple recently blocked an update to Facebook’s iOS app that would have informed users about the fee Apple charges.

Apple’s latest software update has been angering Facebook since it was announced, as Facebook says the new privacy features could destroy part of its business.

WWDC 2020

In the latest version if Apple’s smartphone operating system, iOS, iPhone app developers will need to ask permission from users in order to collect and track their data. While this will affect any company who makes iOS apps, it will have a direct impact on Facebook’s advertising business: It uses data tracking to dictate which ads are served to users. 

In an August blog post, Facebook said it may be forced to shut down Audience Network for iOS, a tool that personalizes ads in third-party apps. 

“This is not a change we want to make, but unfortunately Apple’s updates to iOS 14 have forced this decision,” Facebook said. 

The complaints from Facebook and other developers led Apple to delay the new privacy tools until next year, saying it wanted to “give developers the time they need to make the necessary changes.”

Most recently, Facebook escalated the feud to a full-page ad in The New York Times, Washington Post, and Wall Street Journal.

In the new ads, Facebook is arguing that the changes will hurt small businesses who advertise on Facebook’s platform.

“Without personalized ads, Facebook data shows that the average small business advertiser stands to see a cut of over 60% in their sales for every dollar they spend,” the ad reads, which was posted by Twitter user Dave Stangis. 

Apple hit back, telling Business Insider’s Isobel Asher Hamilton that it was “standing up for our users.” 

“Users should know when their data is being collected and shared across other apps and websites — and they should have the choice to allow that or not,” an Apple spokesperson said.

Facebook said it would help Epic Games, the company behind “Fortnite,” in its legal battle with Apple.

tim cook fortnite epic games apple
A parody of Apple CEO Tim Cook, left, which appeared in a video streamed in “Fortnite.”

Epic Games is heading to trial with Apple next year over its suit claiming that Apple’s engages in anti-competitive behavior.

While Facebook isn’t joining the lawsuit, it is planning to help Epic with discovery for the trial. 

And Facebook is reportedly working on a lawsuit of its own that alleges Apple has abused its power in the app marketplace.

mark zuckerberg facebook
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg in Washington DC on Oct. 23, 2019.

According to a report from The Information, Facebook is preparing a lawsuit claiming that Apple has forced app developers to follow a different set of rules than Apple-made apps, such as requiring developers to use an in-app payments system, of which Apple takes a cut.  

Facebook has reportedly been working on the case for several months and has considered inviting other companies to join the suit. 

Zuckerberg also lashed out at Apple during Facebook’s fourth-quarter earnings call, saying the company frequently interferes with how Facebook’s apps work.

Mark Zuckerberg

When discussing Facebook’s suite of messaging apps during the conference call, Zuckerberg made a clear dig at Apple, saying the iPhone-maker made “misleading” privacy claims. 

“Now Apple recently released so-called nutrition labels, which focused largely on metadata that apps collect rather than the privacy and security of people’s actual messages, but iMessage stores non-end-to-end encrypted backups of your messages by default unless you disable iCloud,” Zuckerberg said.

Zuckerberg went on to describe Apple as “one of our biggest competitors” and said that because Apple is increasingly relying on services to fuel its business, it “has every incentive to use their dominant platform position to interfere with how our apps and other apps work, which they regularly do to preference their own.”

“This impacts the growth of millions of businesses around the world,” he added.

But Cook hasn’t backed down from his view that Facebook’s business model of harvesting user data and selling it to advertisers is harmful to consumers.

Tim Cook
Apple CEO Tim Cook.

During a speech at the European Computers, Privacy and Data Protection Conference, Cook discussed business models that prioritize user engagement and rely on user data to make money. Though he didn’t mention Facebook by name, Cook made several references that alluded to the platform.

“At a moment of rampant disinformation and conspiracy theories juiced by algorithms, we can no longer turn a blind eye to a theory of technology that says all engagement is good engagement — the longer the better — and all with the goal of collecting as much data as possible,” Cook said.

Facebook has launched another ad campaign aimed at proving the need for personalized advertising amid its ongoing battle with Apple.

Mark Zuckerberg

The initiative, titled “Good Ideas Deserve to be Found,” makes the case that personalized ads help Facebook users discover small businesses, particularly during the pandemic. 

“Every business starts with an idea, and being able to share that idea through personalized ads is a game changer for small businesses,” Facebook said in a blog post announcing the theme. “Limiting the use of personalized ads would take away a vital growth engine for businesses.”

The new campaign is Facebook’s latest effort to highlight the value of personalized ads ahead of Apple’s privacy crackdown — the new feature is expected to roll out this spring, and Facebook warned during its most recent earnings that it could begin affecting its business as early as the first quarter of 2021.

Cook called Facebook’s objections to the privacy update “flimsy arguments” during an interview with The New York Times.

Tim Cook

During a podcast interview with The Times’ Kara Swisher, Cook said that he believes society is in a privacy crisis and that he’s been “shocked” that there’s been pushback to the new feature to this degree. 

“We know these things are flimsy arguments,” Cook told The Times. “I think that you can do digital advertising and make money from digital advertising without tracking people when they don’t know they’re being tracked.”

Cook also said he doesn’t view Facebook as a competitor, contrary to what Zuckerberg has said.

“Oh, I think that we compete in some things,” Cook said. “But no, if I may ask who our biggest competitor are, they would not be listed. We’re not in the social networking business.”

Read the original article on Business Insider

Mark Zuckerberg’s phone number appeared among the leaked data of Facebook users, according to a researcher

mark zuckerberg facebook
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

  • Mark Zuckerberg’s personal information appears to be among data posted on a hacking forum.
  • A cyber researcher said Facebook’s co-founders also had their information exposed.
  • Insider’s Aaron Holmes previously reported the leak, which affected more than 500 million users.

The cell-phone number of Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is among the personal information leaked online in a low-level hacking forum, according to a researcher.

Multiple outlets reported the claims about Zuckerberg’s leaked personal information. Data including his name, location, and marriage details, birth date, and Facebook user ID was exposed, The Sun stated.

Insider’s Aaron Holmes had previously reported on the leak, which involved the personal information of more than 500 million Facebook users being posted in the forum.

Cyber researcher, Dave Walker, said Zuckerberg, as well as Facebook Inc’s co-founder, Chris Hughes, and Dustin Moskovitz, were among the 533 million users who had personal data posted on the forum.

“Regarding the #FacebookLeak, of the 533M people in the leak – the irony is that Mark Zuckerberg is regrettably included in the leak as well,” Walker tweeted.

When Insider contacted Facebook on Sunday, a spokesperson said: “This is old data that was previously reported on in 2019. We found and fixed this issue in August 2019.” They did not comment on the reports about Zuckerberg’s information.

Holmes reported, however, that the posting of the entire dataset on the hacking forum for free could now make it widely available to anyone with rudimentary data skills. His report quoted Alon Gal, CTO of cybercrime intelligence firm Hudson Rock, who first discovered the entire trough of leaked data online on Saturday.

Previous Facebook privacy breaches include the much-publicized Cambridge Analytica saga. In that incident, personal data from over 87 million Facebook users was improperly obtained by the political data-analytics firm.

Facebook was hit with a $5 billion fine from the Federal Trade Commission as part of a settlement over claims the company mishandled user data.

The company has vowed to clamp down on data breaches. In a post on its website in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica revelations, it said it would take action on potential past abuse and putting stronger protections in place to prevent future abuse.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Back to the ’90s with Microsoft and Intel

Hello, and welcome to this week’s edition of the Insider Tech newsletter, where we break down the biggest news in tech, including:

I’m your host Alexei Oreskovic. Hit me up with your thoughts, tips, rants and raves at aoreskovic@businessinsider.com.

Did someone forward this newsletter to you? Sign up here.

Soundtrack: This week’s newsletter has been specially designed to be consumed while listening to Blur’s “Bettlebum.”


This week: Back to the ’90s with Microsoft and Intel

Satya Nadella

It’s been a long time since Intel and Microsoft – the much-feared “Wintel” duopoly of old – dominated business headlines and captivated the world’s attention in the same 24-hour period.

And yet this week felt like a return to the ’90s as the two tech giants’ latest moves had the industry buzzing. Let’s start with Intel, the fallen chip champion, which unveiled a big comeback plan on Tuesday.

  • After losing its chip manufacturing edge, Intel has been stuck in a business-model identity crisis. Should it split its manufacturing and design operations? Should it produce chips for other companies? Should it outsource its own production? Intel CEO Pat Gelisinger, just one month in the top job, gave his answer on Tuesday: Yes to all of the above!
  • Intel will double down on chip manufacturing, pouring $20 billion to build two new fabs in Arizona. The fabs will produce the most advanced chips for Intel, and for outside customers – a shrewd move that allows Intel to benefit from US and European anxieties about dependence on China, and to (eventually) tap into all the new chip buyers that have created today’s shortages.
  • But Intel will also use outside contract manufacturers, like TSMC, to produce some of its own chips. There’s something for everyone, though it still may not be enough to bring back Intel’s glory days, as Rosalie Chan reports.

Microsoft meanwhile has already gone through its reinvention. Under Satya Nadella’s now seven-year reign as CEO, the company has thrived by focusing on business customers and cloud computing.


File under curious…

my pillow ceo mike lindell documentary
MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell.

Goodbye Vocl, Hello Frank. MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell’s social network hasn’t launched yet, but it’s already gone through a name change. Frank, as the service will be called, has nothing to do with frankfurters or Frank Sinatra. The name signifies the site’s antipathy to political correctness and its devotion to “forthright and sincere” expression.

WeWork’s SPAC Shaq attack. The office space sharing business has only gotten uglier in the 18 months since WeWork scrapped its IPO, with the pandemic turning downtown business centers into ghosttowns. But WeWork will get its public listing after all, thanks to the SPAC boom. The company will merge with BowX Acquisition Corp, a blank-check company that counts basketball legend Shaquille O’Neal as an advisor, in a deal that values WeWork at $9 billion – about one quarter of its $47 billion valuation in 2019.

Better than Zoom. Coronavirus vaccines have put the end of lockdowns in sight. But for those who’ve decided they actually enjoy staying indoors, the cloisered life won’t have to mean taking a vow of celibacy according to London-based Raspberry Dream Labs. The company is developing a virtual reality set up that delivers sounds, visuals and scents, as well as haptic pulses that provide a sense of being touched. Pandemic or not, the company believes the future of intimacy is remote.


Quote of the week:

“I don’t think we can expect that any platform will find every instance of harmful content. I think we should hold the platforms to be responsible for building generally effective systems of moderating this content.”

facebook zuckerberg misinformation hearing

– Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg at Thursday’s Congressional hearing responding to a question about whether he should personally be held liable for damages caused by misinformation on Facebook.


Recommended Readings:

We identified the 194 most powerful people at Google under CEO Sundar Pichai. Check out our exclusive org chart.

Insiders say incoming Amazon CEO Andy Jassy picked a close ally when he hired Adam Selipsky to run its $51 billion cloud business – and it could make all the difference

Europe’s unicorn founders and investors want to make it easier to spread wealth and compete with Silicon Valley

LASHINSKY: After almost 6 years and billions of dollars, Google med-tech spinoff Verily is still a scattershot jumble of moonshots

Coinbase has become a ‘breeding ground’ for startup founders, with the company’s help and sometimes money, former employees say

A researcher turned down a $60k grant from Google because it ousted 2 top AI ethics leaders: ‘I don’t think this is going to blow over’


Not necessarily in tech:

Apollo’s hard-driving culture is extreme even by Wall Street standards, and it’s burning through young workers. Here’s why $450,000-plus pay and rules to ban weekend emails aren’t enough to keep them happy.


Sponsor content:

This startup CEO used his experience as a product designer for one of Japan’s top automakers to build a solution that is reshaping personal mobility

This woman CEO started a company that uses AI to eliminate mundane tasks and eventually achieve a 4-hour workday


Thanks for reading, and if you like this newsletter, tell your friends and colleagues they can sign up here to receive it.

– Alexei

Read the original article on Business Insider