British Parliament summons Zuckerberg to explain "catastrophic failure" and "misleading" statements


#1

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2018/03/20/british-parliament-summons-zuc.html


#2

We’ve learned a quaint new term for this: “lack of candor.”


#3

Is the UK still under the EU General Data Protection Regulations, which kicks in with heavy boots in 65 days?


#4

Does this request have the force of law?


#5

Yes, the GDPR will apply to the UK as we’re still in the EU until next March (and will have to abide by EU Law for 21 months thereafter…likely more in my view)


#6

No, this is just a polite request, not a subpeona or a summons. It’s doubtful whether Parliament could compel any witness residing abroad to give evidence - particularly one from the US in light of the 1st Amendment. They know he won’t attend but they can say they tried by sending him a letter.


#7

And, of course, his refusal to attend would speak volumes.


#8

what if he attends in VR?


#9

At this point I’d expect someone to suggest that his power has been diffused one way or another and that no one can claim direct responsibility for the current problems – unless they’re just planning to have him look like he’s stepping down in the near future.


#10

The Zuck doesn’t give a fuck.


#11

I have no idea if the UK government will take any action, and maybe this is just for show. But when a government sends you a letter saying, “Hey CEO of [massive company], maybe you’d like to show up to our committee and explain some stuff to us…” one way to read it is, “Hey, we’re about to regulate the fuck out of you, if you’d like to have any say in how that goes down, here’s your chance.”


#12

Lets hope the EU rams their data-protection boot so hard in facebooks ass that Zuck can lick its sole.
As for the UK - I’m surprised that the UK government shows the slightest of concerns. So far I hadn’t the impression that protecting it’s citizens from mass surveillance and privacy invasion is on their agenda - in the past they did the opposite barely held in check by the “Nazi kleptocrats of Brussels”.


#13

Meanwhile

In Washington, the Republican chairman of the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee sent a letter on Monday to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg requesting information and a briefing on the Facebook user data.

“The possibility that Facebook has either not been transparent with consumers or has not been able to verify that third party app developers are transparent with consumers is troubling,” read the letter which was also addressed to Nigel Oakes, chief executive of Cambridge Analytica’s affiliate SCL.

Facebook not transparent? Unpossible!


#14

Being pedantic, this letter is from a cross-party committee of the legislature, not from the executive (i.e. the government). Theresa May is gong to have enough difficulties getting Brexit through Parliament with no majority without introducing complex, unenforceable, legislation to regulate overseas internet behemoths.


#15

The guy who wrote the letter, the chair of the committee Damian Green, is well known for his pro-EU views within the Conservative Party.


#16

Mea culpa - its Damian Collins, also opposed to Brexit, and who represents the constituency next door.


#17

The ‘government’ did not send the letter. A committee of MPs (from all parties) did.

ETA Doh! What @MartinP46300699 said, already.


#18

“You have an Event this week!”


#19

Edited to add snip:

There’s just one small snag. Zuck is an American citizen, meaning he can safely ignore any such summons. If a British or Commonwealth citizen, or someone living in the UK, did that, they would risk being jailed for committing contempt of Parliament.

As it is, while Zuck would undoubtedly piss off the MPs by giving them a stiff ignoring – and it’s not a savvy business move – legally he is safe. Naturally, the hope of the MPs is that Zuck makes an appearance.


#20

Link to several articles about Cambridge Analytica: