Facebook Revealed That It Is Reading Messages: Here's How People Are Freaking Out


Facebook's latest misstep has people on Twitter freaking out about the revelation that Facebook scans the images and links sent through its Messenger service. Most of the people felt that their privacy was being invaded, but Facebook insists that this is being done for their safety.

Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg may have revealed a little too much.

Twitter Reaction

Just like the #DeleteFacebook campaign that was trending on Twitter after the revelation that Cambridge Analytica had Facebook user data, people once again took to Twitter to react. People's biggest worry in the reactions to Facebook scanning messages is that their privacy has been compromised.

There were jokes like people reacting to the news with a gif of Kanye West shaking his head in disagreement, and another tweet saying Zuckerberg is asking for his privacy after revealing that users have no privacy.

Another one of the more interesting reactions had a user dealing with how Facebook is now categorizing messages. The user likened Facebook's monitoring of user's messages to pre-crime monitoring, which is a popular theme in sci-fi about the state going too far like in 1984 by George Orwell or The Minority Report by Philip K. Dick.

Users also reacted by deleting their accounts altogether. A user was just tired of the constant stream of news coming from Facebook about how it is failing to protect user data.

Users are also taking to Twitter to warn people of the dangers of the free service that needs so much of people's data.

Zuckerberg's Comments

What has people so incensed with the story is that Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg was so blasé about revealing this information. In an interview with Vox, Zuckerberg revealed that Facebook is able to stop messages from being able to go through on Messenger.

He cited the instance in Myanmar where groups were trying to incite violence between ethnic groups. Zuckerberg said that Facebook's systems were able to detect what was happening in its messaging service and was able to stop those messages from going through.

Facebook then tried to clarify what Zuckerberg had said, but it only complicated matters further. A spokesperson told Bloomberg that while messages on Messenger were private, they still had to abide by community standards on the main service.

The spokesperson later clarified that this moderation was not being done by humans.

Facebook's other messaging service, WhatsApp, features encryption at the end of both users' communications so that even WhatsApp can't see what users are sending. Messenger also has this encryption option, but it is only activated by users.

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