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Snippet: When Facebook Came for Your Battery, Feudal Security Failed ☇

Shared on February 6, 2023

Cory Doctorow:

When George Hayward was working as a Facebook data-scientist, his bosses ordered him to run a “negative test,” updating Facebook Messenger to deliberately drain users’ batteries, in order to determine how power-hungry various parts of the apps were. Hayward refused, and Facebook fired him, and he sued […]

Hayward balked because he knew that among the 1.3 billion people who use Messenger, some would be placed in harm’s way if Facebook deliberately drained their batteries – physically stranded, unable to communicate with loved ones experiencing emergencies, or locked out of their identification, payment method, and all the other functions filled by mobile phones. […]

Negative testing is standard practice at Facebook, and Hayward was given a document called “How to run thoughtful negative tests” regarding which he said, “I have never seen a more horrible document in my career.”

What a disgusting company, but even worse, Apple should’ve thrown the book at Facebook Meta for this.

Snippets are posts that share a linked item with a bit of commentary.