Mark Zuckerberg recently testified before the United States Senate in regards to Facebook’s role in the recent privacy scandal, and it appears from recently leaked talking points that he intended to drag Apple through the mud during his defense as well.
It was clear going into the Senate hearing that there wouldn’t be much that would come of the situation. With a bunch of out of touch senators that aren’t familiar enough with the world of technology to understand just how Facebook monetized and grew into one of the most successful companies in the world, the conversation didn’t go much of anywhere after Mark Zuckerberg went on the defensive. It appears as if Mark Zuckerberg went into the hearing intending to draw parallels to Apple in a sort of “they did it too” defense, as evidenced by recently leaked notes that the Facebook CEO made before going into the hearing.
— Stefan Becket (@becket) April 10, 2018
A few days ago, Apple CEO Tim Cook pointed out that Apple would stand to gain a lot from monetizing user data, but that they don’t do so because they value their users’ privacy. Mark Zuckerberg fired back with the statement that Cook’s comments were “glib”, and reminded parties that Facebook doesn’t charge for their services while Apple makes a point of charging as much as they can for every device. He then quoted Jeff Bezos, Amazon’s CEO, who emphasized the difference between “Companies that work hard to charge you more and companies that work hard to charge you less.”
While the majority of journalists present at the hearing were spending their time taking pictures of Mark Zuckerberg, an enterprising photographer took pictures of the testimony notes instead – giving us clear insight into the Facebook CEO’s thought process and how exactly he planned to go about his effort to defend his recently-disgraced company.
Included below are the bullet points related to the Apple discussion.
- Bezos: “Companies that work hard to charge you more and companies that work hard to charge you less.”
- At FB, we try hard to charge you less. In fact, we’re free.
- On data, we’re similar. When you install an app on your iPhone, you give it access to some information, just like when you log in with Facebook.
- Lots of stories about apps misusing Apple data, never seen Apple notify people.
- Important you hold everyone to the same standard.
While Tim Cook seemed to think that his company had the moral high ground when it came to their users’ best interest, those words may come back to bite him. Apple has managed to see significant success with their iPhone line, but there’s a possibility that the ability to charge outrageous prices for phones and still see massive sales may not last forever – perhaps forcing the company to negate their focus on privacy in interest of recouping some lost profit. At the end of the day, Apple is a business. They’re one of the most profitable businesses in the world, but if that were to change there’s certainly a possibility that privacy may take a back seat to profit even for a company that makes a point of protecting data