Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg appeared before Congress Tuesday and answered questions ranging from privacy concerns to political bias to sexist advertising, and he also got an earful from plenty of senators who sounded like they didn’t quite understand the questions their staffers had written for them.
It’s almost universally true that no one actually reads user agreements or terms or service, so we’ll have to take Sen. John Kennedy’s word that he has read Facebook’s user agreement and concluded that it “sucks.”
— CNN (@CNN) April 10, 2018
"Here's what everybody's been trying to tell you today, and I say this gently. Your user agreement sucks." – Sen. Kennedy to Mark Zuckerberg pic.twitter.com/lZgNYDZtOQ
— VICE News (@vicenews) April 10, 2018
Mark Zuckerberg's Congressional testimony still has some spark, even at 4 hours in. Said Senator Kennedy: "The purpose of Facebook's user agreement is to protect Facebook's rear end. It's not to inform users about their rights." https://t.co/I333s2Xi30 pic.twitter.com/qauRj817hZ
— WIRED (@WIRED) April 10, 2018
Said Kennedy, “The purpose of that user agreement is to cover Facebook’s rear-end. It’s not to inform your users about their rights. Now, you know that and I know that. I am going to suggest to you that you go back home and you rewrite it and tell your $1,200-an hour lawyers, no disrespect, they’re good, but tell them that you want it written in English and non-Swahili, so the average American can understand it. That would be a start.”
The purpose of Facebook’s user agreement is to protect Facebook’s rear end? Of course it is — that doesn’t make the rest of his statement untrue, though.
— Richard Griffiths (@InvestStratWire) April 11, 2018
I'm not 100% sure where I stand in this debate, but I do agree with this… https://t.co/orF5mcN0Ta
— zaza (@zal0r) April 10, 2018
All user agreements suck. https://t.co/5MifTFP237
— ideawala (@ideawala) April 10, 2018
Come on. You can't be surprised. That's the purpose of every user agreement from every company. https://t.co/wcpFsXwVRF
— Angelo, like, really Wentzler (@meneer_pastoor) April 11, 2018
Fact: The purpose of nearly every single EULA out there is to protect the licensors’ rear end. https://t.co/sFIi4owd31
— 右旋單色檸檬子 (@Monoremonton) April 11, 2018
Isn't this the purpose of all user agreements? And who's fault is that? It sucks, but it didn't start with Facebook. https://t.co/XMCipXNLfE
— Christina Webster (@TechPsychologis) April 10, 2018
Still, will Facebook ever present users with a plain-English explanation of how their personal information can be kept private, or at least paint a clearer picture of how it will be used?
'BIG MISTAKE'! Did Mark Zuckerberg just sign Facebook's death warrant? https://t.co/i6J4jLgWq0
— Twitchy Team (@TwitchyTeam) April 10, 2018