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Silicon Valley

In Congress this week, Mark Zuckerberg was making fake news of his own

The dust has settled on the Facebook CEO’s 10 hours of congressional hearings, giving us a chance to reflect on what he said—and some of it was bunk.

On new data rules: He said that the EU’s incoming privacy guidelines, known as GDPR, would be extended to users across America. That’s incredibly misleading.

On owning your data: Zuck told lawmakers that users can download a file containing all the data that Facebook holds about them. His Privacy Operations Team disagrees.

On AI censorship: Zuck says machine learning will largely be able to automate censorship. He’s wrong: that assumes huge leaps in progress.

And yet: Plenty of people have just nodded along to his answers. Advertisers still seem to love Facebook, and the firm’s value rose by $3 billion during the course of this week.

Deep Dive

Silicon Valley

Here’s how a Twitter engineer says it will break in the coming weeks

One insider says the company’s current staffing isn’t able to sustain the platform.

Twitter’s potential collapse could wipe out vast records of recent human history

What happens when the world’s knowledge is held in a quasi-public square owned by a private company that could soon go out of business?

Twitter may have lost more than a million users since Elon Musk took over

Estimates from Bot Sentinel suggest that more than 875,000 users deactivated their accounts between October 27 and November 1, while half a million more were suspended.

Former Twitter employees fear the platform might only last weeks

An ultimatum by Elon Musk demanding "extremely hardcore" working culture appears to have backfired. Insiders fear this could spell the end without drastic changes.

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Illustration by Rose Wong

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