Tim Cook on Facebook's privacy mishaps: 'We'd never make our customers the product'

Facebook’s privacy and security habits – you know, the same ones that have been going on ever since FarmVille was popular – is suddenly the focus of attention for everyone, including Apple’s CEO Tim Cook. He recently sat down for an interview, and, when asked what he would do if he was Mark Zuckerberg now, quickly replied: “I wouldn’t be in this situation.” Pressed again, he clarified the point further: “We could make a ton of money if our customer was our product. We’ve elected not to do that.”

After all, the whole privacy kerfuffle started only after it became clear that Facebook …


Facebook's Zuckerberg agrees to testify April 10th during a Senate hearing on data privacy

As the fallout from the scandal involving Facebook and Cambridge Analytica continues, Facebook co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg has been invited to testify at a hearing to be held on April 10th by the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee. The hearing will focus on data privacy and sources inside Facebook say that Zuckerberg will testify. Also receiving invitations to appear at the hearing are Google CEO Sundar Pichai and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey. Both men might feel the pressure to testify if Zuckerberg agrees to appear. The CEOs who do attend are sure to be grilled relentlessly by committee members.

Last …

In full-page ads, Zuckerberg apologizes for Facebook's failure to protect users' personal data

A letter from Facebook co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg appears in nine Sunday papers today in the form of a full-page advertisement. The letter, which includes the Facebook logo and Zuckerberg’s signature, contains an apology of sorts. Citing the data on 50 million Facebook users that researcher and former Cambridge University professor Aleksandr Kogan leaked to Cambridge Analytica without permission (some reports allege that Kogan sold the data to the consulting firm), Zuckerberg says that this represented a “breach of trust.” In addition, the executive said that he is sorry that Facebook didn’t …

Facebook's Zuckerberg on Cambridge Analytica: "We made mistakes"

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg finally broke his silence following word that a firm linked to the 2016 Trump campaign was able to target 50 million Facebook users by gaining access to their profiles without permission. The company, Cambridge Analytica, reportedly received the data from a Russian-American Cambridge University professor (Aleksandr Kogan) who was able to obtain it by falsely promising that he would use the data for research only. The CEO of Cambridge Analytica, Alexander Nix, was suspended by the firm after being captured by a hidden camera telling undercover reporters how he …

Facebook's child-friendly Messenger Kids app launches on Amazon Fire tablets in the U.S.

Facebook’s Messenger Kids app, which launched on iOS in December, is now coming to the Amazon Appstore in the U.S. Messenger Kids, as the name implies, is aimed at children under the age of 13, and features a variety of parental control options that allow parents to supervise the online interactions of their children. 

The app is a standalone experience that doesn’t require phone number verification or even a Facebook account to work. The only Facebook account needed is that of the parent who is going to set up the app and have access to their …

More than half this country apparently uses Facebook's Messenger

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Messenger sure is popular Down Under.

Facebook revealed its first country-specific stats for the instant messaging platform, claiming 13 million Australians use Messenger each month. 

That’s more than half the country’s population, and 80 percent of smartphone users, according to data from Statista.

The popularity of Messenger in Australia is why Facebook has identified it as a key market. It’s why it’ll be one of the first countries outside of the U.S. to launch the Discover tab on Messenger, which puts bots from businesses and publishers within reach on the app. Read more…

More about Tech, Australia, Social Media, Instant Messaging, and Facebook Messenger

Download this: Why Facebook's app looks so different

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Facebook’s app is looking a lot different and, surprise surprise, not everyone is a fan.

The company showed off the redesign back in August, when it introduced its latest News Feed updates. But the revamped mobile app is still gradually rolling out to everyone, so many people are just starting to see it. 

Predictably, as with most major Facebook updates, there’s been a strong reaction even though the update isn’t finished rolling out yet. 

The app is now really gray, and looks much flatter, with comments looking more like chat messages than a threaded conversation.  Read more…

More about Tech, Facebook, Design, Social Media, and Apps And Software

Facebook's latest new features are designed to stop scammers from stealing your profile photos

This may not be a problem most people think about, but as it turns out, social media photo theft is a major issue. Whether for the purpose of creating fake profiles or using them for sketchy web advertising, your photos could easily turn up somewhere online without your knowledge or consent. To this effect, Facebook’s latest feature test, right now limited to India only, is designed to stop people from misusing profile photos.

The way this works is far from simple, though: the profile picture guard is actually comprised of five separate layers of protection. …

Facebook's latest update aims to reduce links to spammy websites filled with ads

The almighty Facebook announced plans to limit linking to low-quality websites that could be considered spammy or sensational. The social network claims the changes will be introduced based on the community’s feedback and will be rollout out starting today on all platforms.

Upon the arrival of the update, Facebook users should see fewer posts and ads in News Feed that link to these so-called “low-quality web page experiences.” The update is meant to help reduce the level of monetization of these spammy websites.

Facebook claims that it reviewed hundreds of …

Facebook's new Direct feature is literally Snapchat

Facebook has been putting a lot of work into making its apps look and behave more like Snapchat recently. The most visible example of that is Messenger Day, which launched just a couple of weeks ago, but the company has also been experimenting with various additions to its core app, which it has now begun rolling out to all users.

First off, there’s Stories, which is pretty much exactly the same as its Instagram counterpart – one or more photos that are visible by all of your friends in a 24-hour window. It’s not immediately clear whether this is …