Facebook Official Says Company Should Be Broken Up, Has Too Much Power

A Facebook panel is seen during the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, in Cannes, France, on June 20, 2018. (Eric Gaillard/Reuters)
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BY IVAN PENTCHOUKOV

A top Facebook official told an undercover journalist that the social media giant has grown too powerful and should be broken up, according to a video released by Project Veritas on March 15.

The undercover clips show Benny Thomas, Facebook’s Global Planning Lead, opining about Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg having too much power, expressing concerns about Zuckerberg’s biotechnology startups, and warning about the advent of artificial intelligence.

“I would break up Facebook, which means I would make less money probably, but I don’t care. Like, that’s what needs to be done. Instagram, Facebook Messenger, Oculus, WhatsApp, they all need to be separate companies. It’s too much power when they’re all one together,” Thomas said, according to the video.

“Most people don’t understand these things and most people don’t think about them, which is why a lot of [expletive] goes down because a lot of people aren’t paying attention.”

The Epoch Times sent a request for comment to Facebook. The social media giant is facing two major antitrust lawsuits in the United States, one by the Federal Trade Commission and another by a group of state attorneys general.

“No king in the history of the world has been the ruler of two billion people, but Mark Zuckerberg is and he’s 36. That’s too much for a 36-year-old. You should not have power over two billion people. I just think that’s wrong,” Thomas said.

“He [Zuckerberg] owns a controlling stake in the company. So, you can’t do it the usual way that you do it in corporate, which is the board can just fire you, right? The board can’t do that to Zuck. The board can’t do that to Larry Page and Sergey Brin [Google] because they own too much of the company. They’re too powerful. So, these are not companies anymore. These are countries,” Thomas said.

Thomas has worked at Facebook in New York since September 2019, according to his Linkedin profile.

Thomas also said a project he worked on at Facebook registered more than 4.5 million voters.

“One of the things I worked on, which made me happy, was a voter registration drive. These are the kinds of things—this is the good side of Facebook. This is the kind of thing that you can only do with a company that has the sheer scale and reach of Facebook. We set ourselves a goal of registering four million new people and we went over that target, we did 4.5,” Thomas said.

The voter registration drive by Facebook has not been previously reported. Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, committed $400 million to the Center for Tech and Civic Life for the nonprofit to assist jurisdictions in running elections. The nonprofit came under the spotlight in a number of cases brought after the Nov. 3 election.

Follow Ivan on Twitter: @ivanpentchoukov
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