Call for Facebook to be held accountable for ‘harmful practices’

“Facebook has admitted it enables a range of harmful practices including foreign interference in elections, hate speech, and mass data privacy breaches – yet it remains largely self-governing,” says Green Party spokesperson for Electoral Reform Golriz Ghahraman.

“Today, Facebook will finally appear for the first time before a Parliamentary Committee in New Zealand, so it must answer the tough questions about why we should continue to allow it to profit in the billions while repeatedly failing to protect the privacy and democratic rights of the New Zealanders.

“New Zealand’s intelligence agencies and Electoral Commission have both identified the spread of ‘disinformation’ on Facebook as a key democracy threat in last year’s election.

“Like the threat of radicalisation in online spaces, Facebook profits from associated paid advertising and helps spread malicious messages through its secretive algorithms.

“If Facebook is going to continue to be such a powerful, non-neutral and self-governing force in electoral politics, it must urgently release a transparent, detailed standard to protect us against the very serious threat of disinformation.

“It is time our Government took proper steps to regulate electoral interference through the spread of disinformation, and finally legislate for our right to privacy.”