Senator Shames CEO Into Apology Over Child Exploitation

( – Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg apologized to the families who have been negatively affected by his social media platform’s products during a January 31 child safety Senate Judiciary Committee hearing. The tech billionaire made the comments after being shamed into it by Montana Republican Senator Josh Hawley.

Zuckerberg apologized to parents and even acknowledged the suffering caused by numerous issues on Meta’s platforms, especially Instagram. Hawley initially blasted him for taking no relevant actions to protect children and minors on Instagram and Facebook and later grilled Zuckerberg on why he and his company haven’t offered any compensation to the victims and their families.

The GOP senator then told the tech billionaire there were many family members of some victims at the hearing and asked him if he already apologized to them. Hawley eventually started to push Zuckerberg by telling him that “these good people” needed to hear an apology after being “harmed by your products.”

After remaining silent for a couple of seconds, Zuckerberg told the victims’ families he was “sorry” for the numerous inconveniences and suffering they had “all gone through.” The Facebook CEO added he’s aware that the pain they have been experiencing has been “terrible,” pointing out that no person in the world should ever go through the numerous situations “that your families have suffered.”

The parents and family members he addressed have been claiming over the last few years that Instagram and some other social media platforms contributed to their sons’ and daughters’ suicide or exploitation. Many of these people attended the hearing while wearing blue ribbons that read “Pass KOSA!,” referencing a proposed bill whose primary goal is to increase protection for children and minors online.

Zuckerberg testified in front of the committee, along with the heads of other social media platforms, including Snap, Twitter, Discord, and TikTok. Lawmakers pushed each of the tech executives on their platforms’ policies and practices concerning child safety.

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