Former Facebook VP: social media is ‘ripping apart the social fabric of how society works’

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Sure. You thought posting pics of your vacation, your kids, and posting the occasional meme on Facebook was fun, but little did you know, you were actually taking part in the destruction of society – unless it’s liking, commenting on, and sharing Cactus Hugs stories, I presume.

Facebook’s former vice president for user growth Chamath Palihapitiya gave a talk recently at the Stanford Graduate School of Business and he discussed his former employer, Facebook. He did not have many nice things to say.

You can check out the entire conversation below. Here are some highlights, via Fast Company:

That he feels “tremendous guilt” about Facebook. “I think we have created tools that are ripping apart the social fabric of how society works.”

“The short-term, dopamine-driven feedback loops we’ve created [including the hearts, likes, and thumbs up of various social media channels] are destroying how society works.” He added, “[There’s] no civil discourse, no cooperation; [only] misinformation, mistruth. And it’s not an American problem–this is not about Russians ads. This is a global problem.”

Regarding an incident in which seven innocent men in India were lynched after a hoax about kidnappings spread through WhatsApp: “That’s what we’re dealing with. And imagine taking that to the extreme, where bad actors can now manipulate large swathes of people to do anything you want. It’s just a really, really bad state of affairs.”

Unsurprisingly, when it comes to social media, his children “aren’t allowed to use that shit.”

But, other than that, social media is just great.

Here’s the full chat:


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