Facebook whistleblower testifies before Senate
Frances Haugen, former Facebook product manager for civic misinformation and recent Facebook whistleblower, testified before the Senate on Tuesday, according to CNBC.
The hearing was titled, “Protecting Kids Online: Testimony From a Facebook Whistleblower.”
Haugen previously leaked internal company research to Congress and The Wall Street Journal, and her identity was revealed two days prior to the hearing.
It was revealed that company executives were aware of the negative impacts of Instagram, such as suicidal thoughts, on young users.
According to company documents, 6% of users traced suicidal thoughts or actions to the use of Instagram.
In the Senate hearing, Haugen stated that Congress needs to intervene to solve this problem. She also said that Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg needs to be held accountable for the impact of his business and products.
Haugen said Facebook often places the company’s profits at a higher importance than user safety, but she never accused company executives of purposefully harming users.
Haugen said Facebook has had worse problems than any other place she has worked, including Google, Yelp and Pinterest.
She said she did the right thing by exposing these issues, but she worries about what Facebook will do in response even though she resigned months ago, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Watch the full Senate hearing here.
More than 200,000 minors sexually abused by French Catholic Church
A report was published Tuesday stating that the Catholic clergy in France had sexually abused more than 200,000 minors in the past 70 years, according to CNN.
When including minors who were not clergy members but had other links to the Church, such as Catholic school, the number of abused minors becomes approximately 330,000.
The report found that children were more likely to be abused in church settings than in related organizations, such as Catholic summer camps or schools.
The author of the report, Jean-Marc Suave, said the abuse was systemic and not only stemming from a few corrupt members.
Roughly 3,000 abusers out of a total of 115,000 priests and clerics have worked in the French Catholic Church since 1950.
Most of the violence occurred 60 or 70 years ago, but the problem still exists today. Sexual violence in the Church accounts for about 4% of all sexual violence in France.
The report was commissioned by French Catholic clergy groups in 2018 and paid for by the French Catholic Bishops conference. These groups act independently of the Church and are not paid.
Because of the commission, researchers for the report were allowed access to the archives of religious institutions.
The research team was carefully chosen, made up of 21 interdisciplinary experts with varying religious backgrounds.
The team gathered direct testimony from more than 6,000 people and interviewed 11 known abusers.
Climate change is rapidly killing coral reefs
An international report published late Monday stated that 14% of all coral reefs have been lost since 2009, according to The New York Times.
The report declared that the loss of coral reefs was due to global warming and subsequent climate change.
In 1998, reefs faced a similar decline and recovered, but there is no indication of possible recovery this time.
David Obura, one of the report’s editors, said this double-digit decline was cause for concern, as people worry about even a half percent decline in different sectors such as employment.
The benefits of coral reefs include providing for numerous types of fish which are key protein sources for millions of people, protecting coasts during storms and bringing in billions of dollars in tourism.
The report states that some coral reefs can be recovered or saved if humans act quickly in diminishing greenhouse gases.