The first project of a new non-profit organization launched by Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen will be to create an open source database of the ways in which big tech fails its ‘legal and ethical obligations’ to society
SAN FRANCISCO (AFP) – Whistleblower Frances Haugen, the former Facebook engineer who leaked documents suggesting the company is putting profits before safety, Thursday launched an organization dedicated to combating the harm caused by social media.
The new nonprofit Beyond Screen said its first project will be to document the ways big tech fails its “legal and ethical obligations to society” and help find ways to solve these problems.
“We can have social media that brings out the best in us, and that’s what Beyond the Screen is working to achieve,” Haugen said in a statement.
“Beyond the Screen will focus on tangible solutions to help users take control of our social media experience.”
Haugen last year leaked packets of internal studies that showed executives were aware of the potential for harm to their sites, prompting renewed US pressure for regulation.
Haugen claimed that the tech giant, which has since rebranded itself as Meta, is putting profits over security. Meta resisted the accusation.
The non-profit organization Haugen said it will collaborate with groups including Common Sense Media and Project Liberty that share a “commitment to supporting healthier social media”.
Beyond the Screen’s statement, Project Liberty founder Frank McCourt said that beyond the first screen project “represents a bold, comprehensive and much-needed effort to drive a seismic shift in how social media works.”
“We look forward to working with Francis and her team to launch this new initiative and advance our shared goal of enabling healthier digital societies and stopping harmful business models.”
Since leaving Facebook in 2021, Haugen in the US and other countries has advocated for legislation aimed at making social media platforms safer, especially for young people.