Crisis of confidence in Silicon Valley

Mark Zuckerberg’s “confessional” on CNN broadcast on Thursday 22 March 2018 was a blatant attempt at a public relations ‘damage limitation’ exercise.

I’m not convinced it had the desired effect.

Facebook’s share price continues to fall and pressure for an investigation of the company and its dealings with UK-company Cambridge Analytica continues to mount on both sides of the Atlantic.

“This is a major breach of trust and we are sorry about that, ” says Zuckerberg. Right. But you can’t help feeling he’s trying to play the ‘victim’ of some unwitting scam.

Facebook have made one bad mistake after another  – whether that’s providing a platform for sexual exploitation of women and children or the spread of toxic extremist ideology of sick, evil terrorists.

And judging by the law suits its faces in Europe, Facebook has also paid scant regard to the data protection rights of its millions of users for many, many years because it’s obsessed by global dominance as a social media platform and making a lot of money out of exploiting personal data. Yours and my personal data.

So the culture of Facebook sits at the heart of its problems and can’t be sorted out overnight.

Is it transparent? Is it accountable?

It takes leadership to build a trust-based organisation that has a higher sense of purpose.

There’s a massive question mark hanging over Zuckerberg as to whether he has the ability to restore confidence in Facebook that greeted its arrival on the NYSE. It’s unlikely that he can stem the damage to its reputation in the short term as more revelations over its relationship with Cambridge Analytica will continue to appear in the media over the following days and weeks.

Zuckerberg’s interview raises more questions than it answers.

Watch for yourself here.

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