Mark Zuckerberg finally made an official statement about the entire Cambridge Analytica fiasco:
In the interviews, the first difference that jumps out is the presence of an actual apology for… something. As Zuckerberg said to Recode, “We let the community down and I feel really bad and I’m sorry about that.”
But why is he sorry? He can’t be sorry about Cambridge Analytica purchasing data about Facebook’s users since Facebook’s business model is built on exactly that. So he must be sorry that so many of Facebook’s users, his products, are upset. But why are his products upset? I guess it’s because they don’t understand the deal they made with Facebook.
There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch so if you’re getting something for free, there must be a catch. In the case of Facebook, the catch is that any information you post on Facebook can be sold by the company. Facebook isn’t exactly coy about this arrangement either, although it does try to pretend to care about your privacy by giving you a constantly changing smorgasbord of privacy settings to play around with. Perhaps those privacy settings are the source of contention. Perhaps they give users the false belief that they have control over the information they post to Facebook. Perhaps Facebook’s users are a bunch of socialists who believe in the fairy tale that lunches can be free. Either way, I’m going to try to clear up this apparently murky arrangement.
If you use Facebook, you are the product. Facebook’s business model is to collect your personal information and sell it. Nothing you post to Facebook is private. Everything you post to Facebook is for sale.
I hope that clears up any confusion.