by Matt Agorist, The Free Thought Project:
For those who have been paying attention over the years, it is no secret that Facebook has become a leviathan of censorship and data mining. Facebook users are no more customers of the company than chickens in a processing factory are their voluntarily. When you use Facebook, you are the product.
This notion became even more popular this year with the release of the chilling documentary, The Social Dilemma. While the issues presented in the documentary have been known for several years, during a Monday hearing of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg was accused of something far more sinister than simply pimping out users for ad revenue.
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During the hearing, Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) confronted lord Zuckerberg over information the senator’s office reportedly received from a whistleblower inside Facebook.
“Mr. Zuckerberg, tell me about ‘Centra,” Hawley asked Zuckerberg. “What is the Facebook internal tool called Centra?”
Zuckerberg replied, “Senator, I’m not aware of any tool with that name.”
Hawley then alluded to these claims as lies by responding to Zuckerberg with photographs that he said showed the tool in use.
“Let me see if this refreshes your memory. There is a demonstrative over my shoulder,” Hawley told the censorship happy billionaire. “Centra is a tool that Facebook uses to track its users not just on Facebook, but across the entire internet. Centra tracks different profiles that a user visits, their message recipients, their linked accounts, the pages they visit around the Web that have Facebook buttons. Sentra also uses behavioral data to monitor users’ accounts, even if those accounts are registered under a different name.”
In 2018, TFTP reported on the fact that even if you have never had a Facebook account, this social media leviathan uses online tracking devices that follow a user’s internet activity via third-parties and you never have to visit Facebook for it to happen. But Hawley says the Centra program goes further.
During the hearing, Hawley suggested that the program goes as far as taking enforcement actions against people, asking Zuckerberg, “How many accounts in the United States have been subject to review and shut down through Centra?”
Again, Zuckerberg denied knowledge of the program but did not deny that it existed.
“I do not know because I’m not actually familiar with the name of that tool,” Zuckerberg said. “I’m sure we have tools that help us with our platform and community integrity work, but I am not familiar with that name.”
Hawley pressed Zuckerberg for further details. “Do you have a tool that does exactly what I have described that you can see here over my shoulder? Or are you saying that that doesn’t exist?”
For the third time, Zuckerberg denied having the knowledge of the program but alluded to the fact that it likely exists, saying he was “limited” in what he could share on the spot.
“I’m saying that I’m not familiar with it,” Zuckerberg responded. “And that I would be happy to follow up and get you and your team the information that you would is unlike on this. But I am limited in what I can — what I am familiar with, and can share today.”