Facebook exec will testify at Senate hearing after report finds Instagram harms teen mental health

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Fb Head of World Security Antigone Davis speaks throughout a roundtable dialogue on cyber security and expertise on the White Home March 20, 2018 in Washington, DC.

Chip Somodevilla | Getty Photos

Fb agreed to ship Antigone Davis, world head of security, to testify earlier than the Senate Commerce subcommittee on client safety on Sept. 30, a Fb spokesperson confirmed to CNBC.

The Washington Publish reported the information earlier Thursday.

The listening to comes after The Wall Avenue Journal revealed a collection of studies detailing inside discussions at Fb, based mostly on paperwork it obtained. One of many articles that sparked anger amongst lawmakers revealed that Fb performed analysis that confirmed its Instagram app had a unfavorable influence on many teenage women’ psychological well being, regardless of testimony from prime executives up to now that solely highlighted the platforms’ constructive impacts. Lawmakers in each events demanded solutions from Fb.

Instagram’s head of public coverage, Karina Newton, wrote in a weblog publish following the report that the corporate is exploring methods to nudge customers towards extra uplifting content material.

Sen. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., the rating member on the subcommittee, advised CNBC final week in regards to the upcoming listening to, saying she anticipated it might embrace representatives from Fb, TikTok, Twitter, Snap and Google-owned YouTube. It is not but clear which corporations apart from Fb, if any, can have a witness at subsequent week’s listening to.

A YouTube spokesperson advised CNBC in a press release the corporate is working to find out a date to testify on its privateness and baby security insurance policies. Based on YouTube, the corporate first realized of the Sept. 30 listening to date on Sept. 10, which it mentioned was later than different witnesses realized of it. YouTube mentioned it requested extra time to arrange however the request was denied.

A spokesperson for Snap additionally mentioned the corporate is constant to work with the committee.

Spokespeople for the opposite corporations named didn’t instantly present remark.

Blackburn mentioned in her earlier CNBC interview that her employees has spoken with a Fb whistleblower with the identical paperwork offered to the Journal. The Publish reported Thursday that the whistleblower plans to go public earlier than the tip of the 12 months, probably by testifying earlier than Congress, in accordance with an unnamed aide to Blackburn.

Spokespeople for Blackburn and Fb didn’t instantly reply to requests for remark in regards to the whistleblower’s reported potential testimony.

At a listening to earlier this week that was meant to concentrate on information and antitrust legislation, lawmakers as a substitute ended up grilling a Fb privateness coverage govt in regards to the Journal article. Lots of the similar senators will get one other probability to query Fb at subsequent Thursday’s listening to.

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