Facebook Blames Government Spying for Lack of User Trust

facebook facedeneyterrio/foter.comFacebook’s Mark Zuckerberg followed up comments he made last week on how the US government did a “bad job” balancing privacy and security and explaining it to Americans by suggesting that government spying did more to erode users trust in Facebook than the company’s own sometimes controversial privacy policy changes. Zuckerberg also seems to believe that if the government were just more open about how and how much they ask for data Americans would be more trusting. Via Reuters:

"What I can tell from the data that I see at Facebook is that I think the more transparency and communication the government could do about how they're requesting the data from us, the better everyone would feel about it," he said.

"From reading in the media, you couldn't get a sense whether the number of requests that the government makes is closer to a thousand or closer to a 100 million. ... I think the more transparency the government has, the better folks would feel."

 Zuckerberg also pointed out that government assurances that the NSA is only targeting non-Americans is not helpful when US internet companies are interested in being competitive around the world. The cost of NSA surveillance to US businesses could reach upward of $11 billion a year in the cloud computing industry alone. A recent study of Facebook quitters found nearly half being led to “virtual identity suicide” over privacy concerns. A Reason-Rupe poll, meanwhile, found that three quarters of Americans didn't trust Facebook with their privacy. Watch the Reason TV video below:

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  • Almanian!||

    Hey, Zuckerfuickingdouche - no. You did more than enough on your own to get me off the Facebook. I removed almost all info because of your own policies, and now use other networks to convey actual information and thoughts.

    Nothing to do with the gummint. They suck. You suck plenty on your own. One's mostly got nothin' to do with the other.

    Also, fuck you.

    That is all.

  • Almanian!||

    PS A Reason Rupe poll? Wow! Haven't seen one of those in ages! Where have you been hiding, Emily Ekins?

  • UnCivilServant||

    I had no trust of Facebook long before we found out the extent of the Government's abuses.

    The two are not linked.

  • ||

    No douchebag, it's because you actually gave them the information instead of telling them to pound sand.

    Also, your own retarded policies.

  • Sevo||

    I have a hard time getting angry at the guy. He made no secret of the fact that his entire business plan was mining and selling whatever info people were willing to post on his site.
    Amazingly, people posted all sorts of things and then got upset when he did exactly what he said he was going to do!
    I had a plan for dealing with it which has worked out quite well; I have never even looked a facebook page, let alone posted anything on it.

  • ||

    Still has a punchable face, though.

  • Sevo||

    I didn't say he wasn't an obnoxious twit.

  • ||

  • wareagle||

    I have a problem when he wants to claim a hands off stance, as is FB has never climbed in bed with govt. If all he did was sell info for commercial policies, then no issue. But it's not all.

  • John||

    I tend to agree with you Sevo. No one ever made anyone put anything on Facebook. I consider anything on there to be at risk of becoming public information.

  • ||

    I have been assured by many Smart People that using user data to sell advertising is like a thousand times worse than government spying.

  • Zeb||

    I just have a fake profile so I can look at other people's stuff occasionally. But I almost never look at it because usually it just makes me want to injure my friends for posting stupid bullshit.

  • Dave Krueger||

    The government lies. And they will always lie because that is the nature of government. But, for those who blindly refuse to believe it, go ahead and give them one more chance because, while they may have screwed up the thirteen gazillion chances they've already been given, they might get it right next time.

    That's one thing I hate about arguing with people who see government as benevolent authorities. To them, government only has to tell the truth once to prove they can be trusted. To most of us, a single lie proves that someone can't be trusted.

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