Brian Acton, co-founder of WhatsApp, explains why you need to delete yourself from Facebook immediately during an interview with Wired
"Delete your Facebook account." Brian Acton, one of the founders of WhatsApp, the messaging app bought by Mark Zuckerberg's company for more than 19 billion dollars, said this. Brian Acton said it during one of the many meetings that Wired, one of the most famous magazines dedicated to technology, has organized for its twenty-five years.
It is not the first time that the co-founder of WhatsApp externalizes a similar thought. He had also done it in March 2018, when Facebook was shocked by the Cambridge Analytica case. In that case Brian Acton had published a simple tweet: "It is time. #deletefacebook" (in Italian: it's time to #deletefacebook). During the speech the inventor of WhatsApp explained the reasons that led him to support the idea that deleting from Facebook is a necessity: users' data are at the mercy of everyone. Mark Zuckerberg's social network has profiled more than a billion people to show advertisements based on users' tastes.
From Cambridge Analytica to #deletefacebook
The straw that broke the camel's back was the Cambridge Analytica case that cost Facebook a multi-billion dollar fine and a reputational crisis that was difficult to manage. In those hectic days, Brian Acton launched the #deletefacebook campaign through a tweet on his own account. And more than a year after that day (it was March 21, 2018), the co-founder of WhatsApp still hasn't changed his mind. At the Wired party, he said, "If you want to be on Facebook and you want to have ads thrust in front of you, go to town," which in Italian means "If you want to be on Facebook and you want to have ads thrust in front of you, you might as well go to town."
Facebook has become like a big city square, with ads surrounding our experience. The only difference is that the ads on the social network are based on our personal tastes, thanks to the data we give to Facebook every day.
Facebook - encryption, Brian Acton's doubts
During the interview, Acton also talked about the investments Facebook (intended as a company) is making in encryption. The co-founder of WhatsApp is skeptical about Mark Zuckrberg's commitment to make their platforms more secure, but most likely in the future Facebook will launch a new system for encryption, driven mainly by popular demand for greater control over privacy. Acton, on the other hand, is a real expert in the field, having created Signal Foundation, the non-profit foundation that manages the Signal app used by journalists and human rights advocates around the world to avoid being tracked by authoritarian regimes.