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CNET News Video: Zuckerberg on NSA: Government 'blew it'
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CNET News Video: Zuckerberg on NSA: Government 'blew it'

4:58 /

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg talks about what led his company to file suit against the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court and his views on Facebook's responsibilities with regard to user data.

-The culture, the culture of moving fast at Facebook. Is this a good thing or does it just get you into trouble? And we could talk about things like home and if you want. -Yeah. I mean, whatever-- whatever on a cover. Yeah. I mean, it gets us into tons of trouble, right? So, I'm of the belief that values are only useful when they're controversial, right? So, you know, there are companies that write out these value statements that I think are kind of meaningless because they're table steak stuff. I mean, people are just like "be honest." That's like, of course, you're gonna be honest. I mean, that's not a choice, right? That's not a value. You have to be honest, right? It's like go home if you're not honest. But if-- Move fast is good because it's something that people can actually disagree with. All right. -Yeah. -And there are companies that don't move fast and that succeed, right? When I think, you know, in our-- What I really mean by move fast is that I want to empower people at the company to try things out, and I don't demand that every iteration of what we release is perfect. What I wanna optimize for is learning the most and having the best products 3, 5, 7 years from now, right? What you can do by iterating quickly, getting feedback, learning and going from there. And, I mean, there are companies that have very different approaches than that. I mean, I think Apple would never launch something that didn't meet their perfection bar, and it served them incredibly well, right? So I think you know move fast is a very nice kind of-- you can meaningfully disagree with it, and I think it leads to interesting outcomes. -NSA used your data. You have 1.1 million users, billion. You have more data than any entity in the world, and it's all of our data, and we care a lot about it and we don't want people necessarily getting it and using it to do bad things. We know what Facebook has done over the last several months to try to help increase transparency. We see-- We've seen the lawsuit. We've seen those efforts, and I don't need you to repeat them, although I'm happy to talk about that if you want. What I wanna know is what Mark Zuckerberg thinks about these issues and our right to privacy versus the government. -Yeah. So-- I mean, we take our role really seriously. I think it's my job and our job to protect everyone who uses Facebook and all the information that they share with us. It's our government's job to protect all of us and also to protect our freedoms and protect the economy, right, and companies, and I think that they did a bad job of balancing those things here, right? You know, so frankly, I think that the government blew it, right? I think that they blew it on communicating what they were-- Basically, the balance of what they were going for here with us. So, you know, we-- the morning after the start of breaking, there were like a bunch of people asked them what they thought and the government's comment was "Oh, don't worry. Basically, we're not spying on any Americans." Right? And there was like, "Oh, wonderful." Yeah. It's like "that's really helpful." The companies who are trying to serve people around the world, and they're really gonna inspire confidence in American Internet companies. It's like thanks for going out there and being really clear about what you're doing. So, I think that that was really bad, right? And we've been pushing just to get more transparency on this, and I actually think we've made a big difference, right? I mean, we haven't-- the big question that you'd get from all the coverage is, you know, what's the volume of the total number of requests that are going on? Is it closer to a thousand requests that the government is making of us? Or is it closer to a hundred million, right? And I mean, from the coverage and from what the government has said, you would not know the difference, right? But we worked really hard with the government behind the scenes to get it to the point where we could release the aggregate number of requests. And it's-- There was around 9000 in the last-- the last half year. And, you know, does that number tells everything that we want? No. And, you know, that's why when the conversations kind of got to the point where we weren't going to make further progress, we just had to sue them so we could reveal, you know, is it 1000 or 2000 or 3000 or 4000 or 8000 of the 9000 requests. But the reality is, because of the transparency that we pushed for, you know, now people can know, and I think they deserve to know, that the number of requests that the government is making is closer to 1000, where it's 9000 or less in the last 6 months, and definitely not, you know, 10 million or 100 million, or-- -It's not a direct with regard to grabbing data from your direct-- ­­-Yeah. So, you know, I mean we're not at the end of this. I am-- I wish that the government would be kind of more proactive about communicating. We aren't psyched that we had to sue in order to get this, but we feel like people deserve to know this and we just take this really seriously.

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