Sheryl Sandberg Acknowledges Facebook’s Mistakes During MIT Commencement Address

The Associated Press
The Associated Press

Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg told graduates to “own” their mistakes during an MIT commencement address which outlined the social media giant’s recent missteps.

Last Friday, Facebook COO told MIT graduates that Facebook “didn’t see all the risks coming” and “didn’t do enough to stop them.” Sandberg was referencing Facebook’s recent issues retaining user trust after they were involved in a number of privacy scandals. One scandal allegedly compromised the private information of up to 87 million users. Just last week, reports revealed that a software bug on Facebook may have nullified the privacy settings of as many as 14 million users.

In the address, Sandberg argued that technology should be a driving force for good in the world. “I hope that you will use your influence to make sure technology is a force for good in the world,” Sandberg said during the MIT commencement address. “Technology needs a human heartbeat; the things that bring us joy and the things that bring us together are the things that matter most.”

Despite sweet sentiments like the one Sandberg offered on Friday, Facebook hasn’t been able to shy away from their data leaking controversies. In April, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg testified before the House Energy and Commerce Committee and the Senate Commerce and Judiciary Committee. During both hearings, Zuckerberg spoke about the issues that his company was facing with regards to maintaining the privacy of users.

“It’s clear now that we didn’t do enough to prevent these tools from being used for harm as well. That goes for fake news, foreign interference in elections, and hate speech, as well as developers and data privacy,” Zuckerberg said during the hearings. “We didn’t take a broad enough view of our responsibility, and that was a big mistake. It was my mistake, and I’m sorry. I started Facebook, I run it, and I’m responsible for what happens here.”



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