It was April 2018, the peak of the Cambridge Analytica scandal, and Mark Zuckerberg was testifying before an angry Congress.
Republican senator Orrin Hatch, then 84 years old, asked how Facebook could make any money by offering a free service.
The exchange went viral as a testament to congressional ignorance—can you believe this old guy doesn’t know how Facebook works?.
Above all, they’ve tried to browbeat the companies into adopting better policies around things like fact-checking, content moderation, and political ads.
From that fact flowed a straightforward fix: “Ban the right of companies to use personal data for advertising targeting.”.
If Hansson’s proffer—that targeted advertising is at the heart of everything wrong with the internet and should be outlawed—sounds radical, that’s because it is. »