The Cambridge Analytica data breach also harvested people's private Facebook messages

Someone taking a selfie outside LA

How much is Facebook in control, versus how much are we in control?

More recently, in the latest instalment in a long-running privacy case, a Belgian court ordered Facebook to stop profiling non-members in the country or face a daily fine.

Wrapping up his four-minutes of questioning, Rep. Gus Bilirakis of Florida commended the platform, saying "it's wonderful for us seniors to connect with our relatives".

Leading the region's investigation into Facebook is the United Kingdom, which has been studying "fake news" for months.

With the pressure mounting on the social network, some are speculating that Facebook may soon launch a paid-for version of the platform alongside its current free offering.

Zuckerberg: Congressman, I'm not, I'm not familiar with that.

Although Mr Zuckerberg, 33, had never testified at a congressional hearing before, he succeeded in deflecting questions like a Washington veteran.

"That's not how advertising works, and I do think we could probably be doing a clearer job explaining that, given the misperceptions that are out there", he said in response to a question.

She said that on Monday she personally attempted to deliver a letter about privacy protection to Facebook headquarters, hoping executive Sheryl Sandberg would "lean in" on the consumer privacy initiative.

The social network has confirmed 87 million users' personal data were scraped and used by UK-based political data company, Cambridge Analytica.

The stakes are high for both Zuckerberg and his company.

Even as it issues full-page apologies in print newspapers promising ritualistically "to do better", Facebook and its allies have minimized the importance of the seismic revelation that the political consulting firm Cambridge Analytica, which worked on behalf of the Trump campaign in 2016, had gained access to the private information of about 50 million Facebook users.

Regulation is something even Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg believes is "inevitable".

But what comes next is unclear. "They're trustees and take care of our information online and from that flows certain regulatory expectations", Laidlaw said. Several lawmakers touted bills they've introduced.

"Yesterday when we talked, I gave the relatively harmless example that I'm communicating with my friends on Facebook and indicate that I love a certain kind of chocolate". "I've been impressed by the consistency with which the scientific literature has uncovered negative links", said Ethan Kross, director of the Emotion and Self-Control Laboratory at the University of MI, whose oft-cited 2013 research concluded that Facebook use predicts a decline in users' well-being.

The "like" buttons enable Facebook to track users on pages that are not part of Facebook itself, providing more data for advertisers. That's also what makes Facebook so terrible: It knows everything about you.

On top of that are technologies such as Facebook Pixel, a web targeting system embedded on lots of third-party sites, that the company has in the past trumpeted as a clever way to serve people (including non-members) targeted ads.

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