Facebook and Google Threaten Human Rights, Amnesty International Says 

Facebook and Google Threaten Human Rights, Amnesty International Says 1054
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Tech giants Google and Facebook's business models threaten human rights, global human rights organization Amnesty International said in a report, calling for a ''radical transformation of the tech giant's business model.''

The human rights organization argued that while Facebook and Google do not charge membership fees, their users pay for using their services with their data. 

Amnesty described Facebook and Google's business model as predominantly advertisement-based. The human rights protector even called it a ''surveillance-based'' business model, highlighting that surveillance has become an established business practice of the Internet.

To substantiate its argument, Amnesty International pointed to the Cambridge Analytica scandal to prove how private data can be weaponized against users.

Kumi Naidoo, Secretary-General of Amnesty International, commented that Google and Facebook gradually chipped away at our privacy over the years. Users are now in a trap, Naidoo opined, highlighting that people should either agree to submit to what he calls ''pervasive surveillance machinery'' or give up the benefits of the digital world.

Naidoo emphasized that it could not be a legitimate choice. 

Amnesty International is now urging the national governments to intervene and to overhaul what it calls ''surveillance-based business model.'' The report also asserted that fellow tech firms, Amazon and Microsoft, have also adopted a similar version of this business model.

In Amnesty's opinion, Amazon and Microsoft's business model does not impose an immediate threat to human rights as they are not as essential to how people interact with each other.

Facebook's Steve Satterfield, the Director of Privacy and Public Policy, has categorically declined Amnesty's International allegations, highlighting that Facebook's business model is based on advertising.

Satterfield also added that Facebook does not infringe but advance human rights by giving people a voice and freedom to assemble. Google has not yet commented on the report.

Amnesty International is not alone in its criticism against the Big Tech. US presidential hopeful, Elizabeth Warren, promised to ''break up'' Amazon, Google, and Facebook. 

In her opinion, the tech giants have too much power nowadays. They have powers not only on our society, Warren said, but on our economy and our democracy.  She also accused them of ''bulldozing'' competition by acquiring every small competitor on their way.

Warren went even further to announce that she would no longer accept donations that exceed USD 200 from big tech firms and financial executives in an attempt to keep big money away from politics.

What do you think? Do you agree or disagree with Amnesty International's statement that Facebook and Google threaten human rights?