Facebook has 'altered' people's brains, early investor in the site warns

Facebook has “altered” people’s brains, an early investor in the company has said. 

Roger McNamee has called on the social network to contact everyone who has come across posts designed to spread misinformation on the platform.

He says the company should be more open about these incidents, and should explain what has happened to every single person who has viewed “baloney” content on the site. 

“Those people have all been Zucked,” Mr McNamee told CNBC. “They’ve all had their brains altered, and they’ve come to believe things that weren’t true. And I want Facebook to contact every one of them.”

Earlier this month, Facebook raised its estimate of how many Americans saw Russian-generated content in the run-up to the 2016 election to 150 million.

Mr McNamee criticised Google too, which has also been targeted by Russian trolls. 

“The thing that’s so different about Facebook and Google is they have personal data on every adult and most young people. They are going straight into the brain of two billion people, and we don’t have evolutionary defenses for that,” he said.

“[Facebook] didn’t [build its platform] because they wanted to blow up democracy. I don’t think anyone thought they would be as successful a company as they are. The reality is, though, they have been that successful.”

The comments come just days after Facebook’s first president, Sean Parker, revealed the various secret tricks the social network uses to keep people hooked on it.

“It literally changes your relationship with society, with each other,” he said, saying that the app could be changing the way that people’s mind works.

“God only knows what it’s doing to our children’s brains.”

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