Facebook Facing ICO Investigation

Jul 02, 2014

Social media giant Facebook is facing an Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) inquiry after an “experiment” that manipulated users’ emotions.

The network changed the news feeds of its members, either displaying more positive content or more negative content, to study whether this directly impacted what people posted.

The national privacy watchdog is investigating the research - which was conducted without permission – to determine whether Facebook broke data protection laws.

According to The Financial Times, the organisation would be contacting its Irish equivalent because the social network has its European office in Dublin.

The ICO has also said it is too early to determine exactly what laws have been infringed by Facebook.

Facebook To Cooperate

In response to the investigation, the social network’s European policy director Richard Allen claimed it was willing to answer any questions ICO asks.

Facebook also claimed that it had taken “appropriate protections for people’s information.”

“It’s clear that people were upset by this study and we take responsibility for it. We to do better in the future and are improving our process based on this feedback,” claimed Allen.

Meanwhile, Adam Kramer, Facebook’s co-author of the emotion study report, has apologised for the way the research was handled.

“The goal of all our research at Facebook is to learn how to provide a better service. Having written and designed this experiment myself, I can tell you that our goal was never to upset anyone,” Kramer claimed.

“I can understand why some people have concerns about it and my co-authors and I are very sorry for the way the paper described the research and any anxiety it caused,” he added.

© 24N.biz 

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