Facebook staff has discussed the billing companies access to user data, before finally deciding against such a policy, according to reports.
Internal discussions have been revealed by poorly drafted court documents released in the Facebook lawsuit filed against US software developer Six4Three last year. According to Ars Technica and the Wall Street Journal, an 18-page court record contains three pages believed to be masked because they contain "a sensitive discussion about Facebook's internal strategic analysis of third-party applications," said Facebook in other court documents. .
However, while the sensitive threads were obscured by a black bar, the underlying text was not removed from the digital versions of the documents, which allowed it to be discovered.
This text would show that Facebook staff were explaining how to use user data access to extract larger advertising spend from major customers, in emails dating back to 2012 and 2013. Conversations took place at about the same time. where Facebook decided to change the way third-party developers could access users' data, which had the effect of filling the hole through which Cambridge Analytica's partner, GSR, managed to extract personal information from millions of Users on Facebook.
According to Wall Street Journal reports, an employee proposes to block "one-time access to all applications that do not spend … at least $ 250,000 a year to maintain access to the data."
Elsewhere, the documents suggest that Facebook has proposed to extend the term of use of the older, more permissive access conditions, in exchange for a license to use the company's trademark. meetings on the term "Moments".
There is no indication that Facebook has acted on these proposals and the company has consistently stated that it reinforces restrictions on possible access to the public for confidentiality and security reasons.
The documents come from a set of Facebook emails obtained by Six4Three as part of the discovery portion of his lawsuit against the social network, which was then sealed by the California court. On Sunday, however, the UK Parliament seized copies of emails from the Six4Three CEO, whom he quoted at a Facebook leader meeting on Tuesday.
During the hearings, Clive Effort asked if "the apps were closed because they could not pay a lot of money for mobile advertising," and if the apps were "whitelisted" According to their advertising expenses. Richard Allan, public policy officer for Facebook in Europe, said no to both.
In a statement, Konstantinos Papamiltiadis, director of Facebook's development programs and programs, told the Guardian: "As we have said many times, the documents gathered by Six4Three for this baseless case are only part of history and are presented in a simple form. very misleading without additional context. Facebook declined the invitation to provide the Guardian with emails in their additional context, saying: "The evidence was sealed by a California court, so we can not refute all the false accusations."
Papamiltiadis added, "That said, we are maintaining the platform changes we made in 2015 to prevent anyone from sharing their friends' data with the developers. Any short-term extension granted during this platform transition should prevent changes from disrupting the user experience.
"To be clear, Facebook has never sold data to anyone. Our APIs have always been free and we have never asked developers to pay for them, either directly or by buying advertising. "