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You Zuck’ed up: U.K. parliament calls Mark Zuckerberg to testify over Brexit data scandal

Is Mark Zuckerberg’s libertarian data policy responsible for the single worst financial decision in the history of the United Kingdom? Parliament wants to know.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. (Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Under Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s supervision, Facebook has gone from cuddly social network to a data-mining platform that shadowy governments have used to control elections, influence populations, and generally do nefarious things to the more pliant end of the human species.

All this might not be news to any American who has cracked a newspaper or read a headline in the last year. After all, it was Facebook that Cambridge Analytica used to supply hyper-targeted data to the Donald Trump campaign, which many say gave POTUS 45 the edge to win. But it may come as a surprise to our American readers that Facebook was also used extensively to promote Brexit, the vote that removed Britain from the European Union and is projected to cripple the British economy

Now, U.K. lawmakers in parliament are asking that Zuckerberg testify in front of them, either by his own accord or (and here’s the really interesting part) by force next time he enters a British territory. They want him to tell them just what Facebook did to mitigate the data scandal and what it will do in the future to make sure it never happens again. 

BREAKING: This is pretty extraordinary. Parliament issues ultimatum to Facebook. Either Mark Zuckerberg comes voluntarily. Or, he’ll face a summons next time he enters British territory. Facebook really couldn’t have handled this much worse…

— Carole Cadwalladr (@carolecadwalla) May 1, 2018

The company had already sent over Chief Technology Officer Mike Schroepfer, who answered questions for five hours of testimony but didn't answer 40 key questions. British lawmakers now want those questions answered and are asking Zuckerberg to appear for hearing on May 24th. 

That's bad news any way you slice it for the social network. While Zuckerberg did testify in front of U.S. politicians last month, he only escaped largely due to the fact that they had no idea how Facebook actually worked (hint: they show ads to users) or what questions to ask. While Zuckerberg may be one of the richest men in the world, he's definitely not one of the most liked: many are calling for him to step down from the company entirely as this massive data misuse only appears to be the tip of the iceberg. 


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