back to article Facebook sends lowly minions to placate Euro law makers over data-slurp scandal

Facebook has once again irked EU politicos by failing to send sufficiently senior staffers to face another grilling on the data-harvesting saga. Today, it was the turn of the EU Parliament's civil liberties committee (LIBE) to issue a disappointed statement after it was denied access to the execs it had asked for. Since the …

  1. GIRZiM Bronze badge

    Bullshit? Bingo!

    "Our vision is of a mission to declare our intent to attempt to strive to try to do better at learning."

    There, that probably sums up what will come out of it.

    1. find users who cut cat tail

      Re: Bullshit? Bingo!

      Does it? Buffer overflow protection prevented me from parsing it further after half a dozen of tos and ofs....

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: Bullshit? Bingo!

        "Buffer overflow protection prevented me from parsing it further"

        You're not supposed to parse vision and mission statements. You might be tempted to analse them and then you'd discover they don't mean anything.

        1. GIRZiM Bronze badge
          Coat

          Re: Bullshit? Bingo!

          Strictly speaking, they're unparsable; they're constructed by ex LISP programmers who ensure they're fully recursive with no final truth value to prevent an endless loop - like Zuckerberg himself, they're unEVALable to anyone wanting to know what they do.

          (I'll get my coat)

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Facebook's chief privacy officer Erin Egan

    The fact that Facebook actually has a "privacy" officer is laughable.

    How does this sock puppet sleep at night with that job description?

    Oh, yeah...on a bed of data mining blood money.

    1. Barrie Shepherd

      Re: Facebook's chief privacy officer Erin Egan

      "The fact that Facebook actually has a "privacy" officer is laughable."

      Perhaps we misunderstand the underlying/undocumented function of the Facebook Privacy Officer.

      Maybe his role is to protect, at all costs, the Privacy of Facebook and it's Executive staff from the probing of EU and UK Government departments. Given the current position he seems to have been very successful so is probably sleeping very soundly.

      1. Marketing Hack Silver badge
        Thumb Up

        Re: Facebook's chief privacy officer Erin Egan

        @Barrie Shepherd

        Can't +1 you enough for that comment. It was exactly what I was going to say about whose privacy FB's privacy officer really protects

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Facebook's chief privacy officer Erin Egan

      Take accountable this Mark "Zuck" Sugarmountain, his CCO Sheryl Sandmountain and his "privacy" officers. Put them behind bars.

  3. ratfox Silver badge
    Unhappy

    It is unsightly that politicians are trying to shore up their self-esteem by insisting they should talk to a famous person rather than a competent one.

    1. James 51 Silver badge

      Those people are suppose to be the ones making decisions and setting policy. The EU could bite down on Facebook hard by insisting that servers are on EU territory and start chipping away at their business model by restricting how Facebook can use the data. It might take that for Facebook to take the EU seriously.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        "start chipping away at their business model by restricting how Facebook can use the data. It might take that for Facebook to take the EU seriously."

        At some point that's going to happen. Facebook will then find legislators treating it with the disdain it showed them. What goes around comes around. FB would be well advised to remember that.

        1. This post has been deleted by its author

          1. tfewster Silver badge
            Facepalm

            @Shadmeister

            A GDPR fine of 4% of FBs $12Bn annual revenue may only be $0.5Bn "pocket change"; But multiply by 370 million EU users and multiple, continued breaches per user, and pretty soon they're looking at serious money.

            1. This post has been deleted by its author

              1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

                Re: @Shadmeister

                "Will the EU implement such a fine against the social platform that every loves to use and cause disruption ? No."

                No? Really?

                1. This post has been deleted by its author

                  1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

                    Re: @Shadmeister

                    "The EU may implement a fine, but not the 4% which has been indicated here."

                    Citation needed.

                    "The court proceedings against the VW people etc., is not the EU, but the USA."

                    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-44517753 This was in Germany, not the US.

                    1. This post has been deleted by its author

          2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

            "Facebook is worth nearly 1/2 trillion dollars."

            What does "worth" mean? If you mean money in the bank you might have a point although the shareholders might want some of that "returned" to them.

            If you mean stock market valuation then you have to account for the fickleness of the stock market. It's not real money, just a projection of the price at which recent transactions took place. A surplus of sellers over buyers will change that in an instant and feedback can amplify such changes. Sticking with your point of GDPR fines a 4% fine would cause at least a bit of a wobble. If there were a few cases ongoing and FB had to announce it was making a provision of an eighth of its turnover for possible fines the feedback loop might really start a plunge.

            Actually, I was thinking not of GDPR which is done and dusted as far as legislation is concerned. But what of new legislation? A reconsideration of corporate taxation rules? What about the idea of having companies pay the data subjects for slurpage as discussed here https://www.theregister.co.uk/2018/06/22/cowen_technopoly/ ? Or, more likely, governments being governments, valuing the slurpage as a taxable asset?

            And don't just think in terms of fines; we are starting to see criminal sanctions against company officers, e.g. in the case of the VW emissions business. Zuck and his friends really wouldn't like legislation that puts them in line for those (actually GDPR already does).

          3. iron Silver badge

            @Shadmeister

            "you cannot avoid Facebook easily."

            Nonsense. I have never been a member of FB and have never used any of their services. I do not have to do anything out of the ordinary for that. Sites that use FB login usually also provide other options such as Google and MS, if they only provide FB then I wouldn't want to use their garbage site anyway.

            If you meant its almost impossible to avoid them building a shadow profile on you from your idiot friends' contact lists and photos, beacons and like buttons on 3rd party website, etc then I agree but that is not what you said.

            1. This post has been deleted by its author

          4. Rob Gr

            "I did a quick check and Facebook is worth nearly 1/2 trillion dollars. So, if they do not play ball, any fine really, is going to be insignificant."

            GDPR penalities are up to €20 million, or 4% of annual turnover - whichever is higher. So, even to Facebook, that could be a problem.

            1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      So are you saying he isn't the big boss and is just a figure head of the organisation? Corporations don't work the same as politics. He is the major shareholder so what he says goes and if he doesn't know what his company is doing then who does?

    3. Voland's right hand Silver badge
      Devil

      It is indeed a question of competence, but of a different kind. Not the competence in the area of privacy, but competence as in "being able to set policy and issue orders".

      In any case, I do not see what their problem is. All they need to do is to find a "Prodotti di Berlusconi" ranking MEP in their ranks to do a quick deal with Facebook so that whoever shows up shows up only for 30 minutes, runs a script and disappears after that. If they have one, even the ZuckerBorg himself will show up as it will be totally prearranged, pre-set and completely safe. By the way "Prodotti Di Berlusconi" are not corrupt. Oh, no, there is nothing like corruption involved. Really. Really, really, really...

  4. Shadow Systems Silver badge

    I've said it before, I'll say it again.

    If FB refuses to answer all your questions to your satisfaction, then simply ban FB until it complies.

    If you block your citizens from accessing FB at all (except via VPN) then you stop FB from being able to make any money off them. If you freeze all FB assets located in your area & hold it hostage pending a full audit of their books WRT to the paying of proper taxes, GDPR compliance, etc, then FB will lose *Billions* as a result. And THAT is how you make that uppity shitlick sit up & do your bidding, by hitting him right where it hurts: his share/stakeholders' wallets.

    How fast would his own board hand him to you like a trussed up pig for the BBQ once their bank accounts started hemmoraging cash? How much could you fine FB under the GDPR? How much money could FB's 'holders stand to lose while their boss gives TheFinger to you? I'm betting it will be measured in nanoseconds after the first fine slaps them in the face.

    Please oh please oh PLEASE ban FB! Please bankrupt their worthless asses for all eternity. Have every FB executive arrested, their assets frozen, then the bodies thrown into a long disused lavatory at the bottom of an unlit flight of stairs behind a sign that reads "Beware of the leopard!" & forced to listen to Vogon poetry for the rest of their lives...

    1. Commswonk Silver badge

      Re: I've said it before, I'll say it again.

      forced to listen to Vogon poetry for the rest of their lives...

      Ah the nostalgia. Thinking about it wouldn't Freddled Gruntbuggly and Foonting Turlingdromes (to mention but two) make superlative pseudonyms for posters on this esteemed site?

      If anyone signs up with any of them now we'll all know who gave them the idea...

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: I've said it before, I'll say it again.

        "If anyone signs up with any of them now we'll all know who gave them the idea."

        Or we'll just think it was you signing up with a new handle.

    2. Barrie Shepherd

      Re: I've said it before, I'll say it again.

      "If you block your citizens from accessing FB at all (except via VPN) then you stop FB from being able to make any money off them."

      Inevitably FB will be fined by the EU for something, they will scream but eventually get the cleaning lady to pay up from the Petty Cash box they keep for other cleaning products.

      As Shadow Systems says above far far better to block Facebook, sort of equivalent to the removal of liberty of a prison sentence, for a number of consecutive days. That will make all the users aware of the bad things they have done, allow the addicted ones some cold turkey and probably increase productivity in the EU overall.

      People will scream "but you are hurting the innocent users" - good! that's the idea as it will only be the "innocent" users who can bring pressure on FB and the like to change their ways.

      Governments need to get some 4/3 Pi R[] and hit organisation where it hurts, fines have no clout.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: I've said it before, I'll say it again.

        "fines have no clout."

        Fines which scale with turnover have clout. Your cleaning lady won't be spending 4% of your annual turnover, possibly several times a year, unless you have a serious contamination problem or a barely visible turnover. And when things get serious it won't be your cleaning lady who goes to gaol, it will be the senior local management.

      2. iron Silver badge

        Re: I've said it before, I'll say it again. @Barrie Shepherd

        "but you are hurting the innocent users"

        There are no innocent users of Facebook. They are all complicit in helping to build the mass surveillance network they think of as helping to connect them with their friends and family.

    3. onefang Silver badge
      Coat

      Re: I've said it before, I'll say it again.

      "Beware of the Leopard!"

      They are being guarded by an ancient version of Mac OS X?

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "See if Facebook's answers will be sufficient, convincing and trustworthy"

    It will take a Mossad hitsquad at the foot of Zuk's bed to bring any of that:

    https://www.theregister.co.uk/2018/06/21/facebook_privacy_israel/

  6. Wolfclaw Silver badge

    So lets round up, US meeting FB says FKU, UK meeting FB says FKU, EU meeting FB syas FKU, do we not just see a pattern were FB is telling the world to go FK themselves, they are too big, powerful, rich and laws to apply to them. Time to for the politicians to go after them big style like Microsoft, Intel and now Google !

  7. Clunking Fist Bronze badge

    EU Parliament Makes Laws, eh?

    I was under the mistaken impression they could only rubber stamp the laws put in front of them by the Commissioners. My bad.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Nuke em

    It's Monday. The winds blowing from the west!!

    Nuke me from orbit it's the only safe way

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