Amidst the criticism from advocates of privacy over the revelations regarding the data-mining operations of Cambridge Analytica, Elon Musk, the outspoken tycoon, announced on via a Twitter that he was participating in the #deletefacebook movement as a response to Brian Acton, the founder of WhatsApp.
Musk simply responded, “What’s Facebook?” prior to agreeing to remove the Facebook accounts for Tesla and SpaceX. He added: “I didn’t realizse there was one.”
He continued: “First time I’ve seen either.” Shortly thereafter, both pages disappeared from Facebook.
Jan Koum and Acton, the co-founders of WhatsApp, sold WhatsApp to Facebook in 2014 in a deal that was worth $16 billion. Acton’s worth is more than six billion dollars. He left Facebook to launch his own non-profit foundation earlier in 2018. He has also invested $50 million in an alternative service to WhatsApp that is called Signal.
Acton utilised Twitter to encourage his followers to drop Facebook. He wrote: “It is time,” adding the hashtag #deletefacebook.
The anti-Facebook movement is achieving traction, with the hashtag trending during the past week. According to The Wrap, the social network had the first quarterly decline in its history, losing approximately one million domestic users in 2017.
As reported by the New York Times, Cambridge was able to obtain private information from over 50 million profiles on Facebook without their permission. The social media platform has since updated its agreement with various third-party developers, preventing them from using data that are obtained from profiles of friends.
If ever people would want to join the movement, deleting Facebook is a straightforward process. Under the Settings option, in Manage Account, the Edit feature has an option that is called “Request account deletion.” However, Facebook warns that it may take a maximum of 90 days to remove everything that the user has posted.
Zuckerberg and Musk have quite a history. Zuckerberg said that he was “deeply disappointed” in an unusual statement following the explosion of a SpaceX rocket on the launch pad in 2016, resulting in the loss of the Amos-6 satellite of Facebook. Last year, after Zuckerberg dismissed the concerns of Musk regarding artificial intelligence, Musk responded with a tweet calling the understanding of Zuckerberg regarding the subject “limited.”
Musk certainly does not seem worried about the lack of a presence of his companies on Facebook.
In a follow-up tweet, he said: “Looks lame anyway.”