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Facebook destroys democracy – it's time to wake up



Photo: REUTERS

Mark Zuckerberg refused to come to the British Parliament and answer various questions.

This week was confiscated The British Parliament in its historical fear of a number of documents hopes to provide more clarity in the Cambridge Analytica scandal, and in the long run what role Facebook has played in a referendum on Brexit. Nine countries have chosen in the UK asking Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg himself to come to parliament and answer questions. But Zuckerberg refused, he did not think that the people selected in these countries in the market, Facebook gets a large portion of their money is important.

Last week, the New York Times revealed that Facebook paid for a massive campaign, in which company critics were paired with George Soros, a Jewish financial expert who was targeted by hate campaigns around the world. In simple language: Facebook uses fake news with anti-Semitic features to protect its own brand.

In a recent interview With American technology journalist Kara Swisher, Philippine editor in chief, Maria Ressa, told her how desperate she was to try to make Facebook react to all the hatred, threats and lies that spread – and how Facebook failed to act. "Social media was fertilized which caused a democratic collapse in the Philippines," Ressa said in an interview. The same thing he said when I interviewed his last spring.

In country to country, the internet and social media are now being discussed in more critical terms, because research and experience gained is expensive to grow. But in Sweden, conversations are mostly non-existent. It's interesting to wonder why.

Sweden is one engineering countries. Swedish people are good at attracting new products, higher education levels, as well as trust in society and the government. The success of the Swedish economy is based on the ability to seize new technology, to see the world as its market, to say yes to new ones. From this technical talent and global creative environment, successes like Skype and Spotify will come. "Tech" has been synonymous with progress and the future. In many other countries in Europe there are other traditions, more skeptical, conservative or nationalist.

Swedish land retention is good and good, but it is totally useless when a company that was plagued ten years ago is now a global power player who is building a computer monopoly and destroying democracy. When technological optimism breaks into naivety and creates a shadow, it becomes dangerous.

In Sweden, for example, an important debate about public services is funding and future roles in the Swedish media landscape. Politicians from all parties participate in the debate, often based on good knowledge and wise thinking. At the same time, many times the same politicians seem uninterested, or at worst, unconcerned about how Facebook affects the conditions of the Swedish media market. This is worrying.

Currently there an excellent American documentary "Facebook – friend or foe" in SVT. This is a good basic course in some of the problems we all have to face in the next few years.

"I don't think we have fully understood the deadly threat facing Facebook against our society. There is no democracy that can tolerate so much concentration of power. This action is a robber of our souls," wrote liberal writer Financial Times Edward Luce on Twitter today.

It may sound difficult, but in the sense that many researchers, journalists and former employees of technology companies have landed today. Democracy is in danger. It's time for Sweden to wake up too.

Karin Pettersson

Therefore, Facebook is in a crisis 12:39


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