- Facebook whistleblower Sophie Zhang will testify to British lawmakers on October 18.
- This comes days after another Facebook whistleblower, Francis Haugen, agreed to testify in the UK
- Haugen testified in Congress last week on internal Facebook studies he leaked to the Wall Street Journal.
LONDON – A second Facebook whistleblower has agreed to testify in the UK Parliament.
Former Facebook data scientist Sophie Zhang says he was fired by the company After highlighting its alleged failure to deal with electoral interference in Honduras and various other countries.
At the time of her disclosure, a Facebook spokesperson said that “we fundamentally disagree” with her characterization.
She will give evidence to British lawmakers on October 18, according to a statement from a parliamentary committee on the Online Security Bill. The proposed law threatens to impose heavy fines on tech giants if they fail to take action against illegal or harmful content.
Lawmakers “will question Sophie Zhang about her work as a data scientist for the Facebook site Integrity fake engagement team, which often deals with bot accounts run by government-backed agencies in countries like Russia.”
The news comes days after a former Facebook product manager who leaked thousands of internal documents agreed to testify in parliament. EU lawmakers have also asked him to testify.
Haugen made headlines last week when he testified in Congress on internal Facebook studies showing Instagram’s negative impact on teens, as well as exemptions from its rules for high-profile users.
The whistleblower said the company’s leadership had put “profits before the people” and called on US lawmakers to intervene. In response, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said Haugen’s allegations were “simply not true”.
It marks one of the biggest crises in recent history for the company, which comes at a time when lawmakers around the world are trying to curb the immense power and influence of America’s tech giant.