Mark Zuckerberg has got hard times these days. The scandal over the disclosure and misuse of 50 million users’ information to Cambridge Analytica puts Facebook in the biggest distress since its conception. This is also the biggest distress to millions of Facebook users and advertisers – even if they (or you) are not yet aware what happened and what to do now.
On Friday, March 16, Facebook officially suspended a British data analytics company Cambridge Analytica from the site, making it impossible for them to buy any ads or to access any data on Facebook. This was the last pre-emptive action that Zuckerberg’s empire managed to take before The Observer and The New York Times exploded with weekend news of how Cambridge Analytica acquired data on 50 million Facebook users without their consent and used it to influence voters in the Trump versus Clinton election campaign and the Brexit referendum.
The news came from Christopher Wylie, a whistle-blower and a former employee of Cambridge Analytica who spilled the beans straight to the leading media outlets, including a live appearance at CNN:
Cambridge Analytica followed with a statement rejecting these allegations, but it did not stop the scandal. The situation outraged people worldwide, including governments, leading business figures and individual Facebook users. Why you should care?
"We made a mistake"
According to a survey commissioned by Sky News this week, 80 percent respondents said that they do not understand what Facebook does with their data. Yet, as more news of the scandal pop up, as many as 65 percent respondents admit that they now trust Facebook less than ever
On the same day, March 21, Mark Zuckerberg finally broke the silence and issued his long-awaited official statement on the Facebook & Cambridge Analytica scandal, in which he admitted Facebook ‘made a mistake’:
In the comments below this post, Zuckerberg also informed that he is going to appear in an interview with CNN shortly. This is an unprecedented situation in the history of Facebook, because never before have they been exposed to such a crisis as a company. In this crisis, they are fighting to regain trust (if it is possible at all), which they need to maintain their position as a leading social network and a very profitable advertising platform. The stakes are high: 2.13 billion monthly active users equals a lot of impact and very high budgets of companies using Facebook to advertise their products and services globally.
Importantly, the mistake Zuckerberg admitted in his post is different from what the public expects. Read on to learn why.
Witch hunt begins: Cambridge Analytica Ex-CEO Alexander Nix portrayed as the main culprit