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Welcome to the Tuesday edition of Internet user, where we dissect technology and politics online. Today:
- ‘Nightmare scenario’: Biden’s delay in appointing FCC leaders could lead to Republican takeover
- Facebook whistleblower reveals her identity
- Advocacy group urges FTC to crack down on surveillance advertising
BREAKING THE INTERNET
‘Nightmare scenario’: Biden’s delay in appointing FCC leaders could lead to Republican takeover
President Joe Biden’s delay in announcing his plans on what to do with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) left him close to what seemed unthinkable just a few months ago: his party lose majority at the agency.
Biden was historically slow by announcing who will permanently chair the five-person agency. This delay, as observers have noted, has already rejected all potentially expensive items FCC Should Go Against Democratic Majority As Restoration net neutrality rules.
There is a long list of items people would love to see the FCC take on itself, but it cannot realistically do so without a full agency, where any important decision would take a party line vote.
Upon taking office, Biden inherited a 2-2 agency deadlocked. Presidents have the option of appointing an FCC president and appointing commissioners, who are then confirmed by the Senate.
Despite almost constant pressure public interest groups and others to fill the agency since taking office, Biden has only named Jessica rosenworcel, a Democrat, as interim president.
Corn eight months in his administration, Biden still has to go further either by making Rosenworcel the permanent president and appointing a fifth commissioner, or by appointing someone else to become president of the agency.
While the delay stopped all movement On a number of different agenda items, Biden now faces another hurdle: If he waits much longer, he faces the possibility that the FCC have a 2-1 Republican majority in just a few months. Fight for the Future director Evan Greer called the situation a “nightmare scenario”.
“The current scenario is sort of a nightmare already, in the sense that we are in the middle of a pandemic and access to an affordable and open internet is more important than ever and the agency that is supposed to oversee this industry is effectively knee brace “, Greer noted, adding: “The even worse nightmare scenario is that it takes so long that we have a 2 to 1 majority of people at the FCC who are indeed cronies for the telecommunications industry.”
Read the whole story here.
—Andrew Wyrich, Associate Technical Writer
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Facebook whistleblower reveals her identity
Facebook’s whistleblower has revealed his identity.
Former product manager Frances Haugen, who first spoke at the Wall Street newspaper, publicly manifested this weekend. Haugen has provided internal documents to media, lawmakers and regulators which she says demonstrate that Facebook is aware of the harm that implies.
She thinks it’s does not want to effectively tackle these issues because it will potentially reduce engagement and profits.
In a statement to Newspaper, Facebook spokesperson Andy Stone categorically denies Haugen’s accusations.
Haugen worked at Facebook for two years before leaving in May. She told the Newspaper that his initial goal was help the company correct its weaknesses.
People have long complained that Facebook and Instagram are having a negative impact Mental Health, to allow electoral interference, and facilitate the spread of disinformation and conspiracy theories. As the world’s largest social media company, Facebook tends to receive more criticism, but other platforms have faced similar accusations.
—Claire Goforth, Contributing Writer
Advocacy group urges FTC to crack down on surveillance advertising
Accountable Tech, an advocacy group, urges the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to start a rule making process who would be ban surveillance advertising.
In his petition, Accountable Tech notes that President Joe Biden signed an executive order in July that between many other things– hurry the FTC to make rules which would deal with “unfair data collection and surveillance practices”. In light of this, the petition notes, the FTC should ban surveillance advertising “as a method of unfair competition.”
Surveillance advertising, the petition says, has “become a very lucrative business model dependent on ubiquitous tracking and profiling in order to sell hyper-personalized advertising.”
This kind of advertising, and the amount of data collected from it, “builds on and cyclically strengthens the monopoly power” of big tech companies like Facebook and Google, the petition says.
In September, a group of Democrats also urged the FTC to initiate a rule-making process that strengthen consumer privacy.
* First published: October 5, 2021, 10:40 a.m. CDT
Andrew Wyrich is Associate Technical Writer at The Daily Dot. Andrew has written for USA Today, NorthJersey.com and other newspapers and websites. His work has been recognized by the Society of the Silurians, Investigative Reporters & Editors (IRE) and the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ).