Facebook’s parent company Meta is in the wires again, as investors have filed a class-action lawsuit against it. The investors maintain that the stock prices were driven up artificially as on-ground the moderators rather than opting for practices that would help them a safer platform for all their actions were an “egregious breach of public trust”.
They seek compensation for the same, as the content based problems were also hidden from them, painting a merrier picture, while their practices differed, and thereby they stood misrepresented.
The document filed, stated that, “Defendants (Meta) repeatedly misrepresented to investors and the public that use of Facebook’s products does not harm children, that the Company takes aggressive and effective measures to stop the spread of harmful content, and that Facebook applies its standards of behavior equally to all users.”
The main argument revolves around the point that, to show, they had a robust set of policy description in place which would win an investor’s confidence, however the same was not put to practice, and rather the opposite action was taking place in order to churn profits.
The investors allege that, the company “opted to maximize its profits at the expense of the safety of its users and the broader public, exposing Facebook to serious reputational, legal, and financial harm.”
The issue has caught fire since one of the employees Frances Haugen, became a whistleblower, describing the social media platform as ‘dangerous’. She revealed through many leaked documents that, the company was privy to the fact that it fuelled hatred, and caused harm to those using it, yet opted for no rectification of the same.
Citing many other concerns, which would make users think twice before using it, the whistleblower also found that Facebook was aware through its research that it, “make[s] body image issues worse for one in three teen girls,” and that they “blame Instagram for increases in the rate of anxiety and depression.” This reportedly led to increased rates of suicidal thoughts and eating disorders among such female users.
In addition to these allegations, one argument was also about how Facebook would turn a blind eye towards the activities of certain High Profile Users. The response mechanism of the company against illegal activities was also criticized in the legal filing.