Facebook Hides Data Showing It Harms Users. Outside Scholars Need Access.

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(This opinion essay was first published for The Washington Post on October 5, 2021.)

The disclosures made by whistleblower Frances Haugen about Facebook — first to the Wall Street Journal and then to “60 Minutes” — ought to be the stuff of shareholders’ nightmares: When she left Facebook, she took with her documents showing, for example, that Facebook knew Instagram was making girls’ body-image issues worse, that internal investigators knew a Mexican drug cartel was using the platform to recruit hit men and that the company misled its own oversight board about having a separate content appeals process for a large number of influential users. (Haugen is scheduled to appear before a Congressional panel on Tuesday.)

(Continue reading the opinion essay on the The Washington Post’s page here.)