2017-12-12 — fortune.com
... another Facebook alum has come out with deep regret over his involvement in the company's work. This time it's venture capitalist Chamath Palihapitiya, Facebook's former head of user growth, who told the Stanford Graduate School of Business that he feels "tremendous guilt" over Facebook's divisive role in society, as exploited by Russian agents in last year's U.S. election.
He added that Facebook encourages "fake, brittle popularity," leaving users feeling empty and needing another hit, and suggested that this "vicious circle" drives people to keep sharing posts that they think will gain other people's approval...
"If you feed the beast, that beast will destroy you," Palihapitiya advised his audience. "If you push back on it, we have a chance to control it and rein it in. It is a point in time where people need a hard break from some of these tools and the things that you rely on. The short-term, dopamine-driven feedback loops that we have created are destroying how society works. No civil discourse, no cooperation, [but] misinformation, mistruth."
He added that this is a "global problem" and not just about Russian ads.
"My solution is I just don't use these tools anymore," Palihapitiya said. "I haven't for years. It's created huge tension with my friends...I guess I kind of innately didn't want to get programmed." He also doesn't allow his children to use social networks, he added.
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