The father of social media had an embarrassing and controversial year.
During the 2016 election, Cambridge Analytica, a firm linked to President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign, used a quiz app on the site to cull data from millions of Facebook users. This data was used to build psychological voter profiles before the election. The revelations came to light in 2018 and resulted in Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg testifying in front of Congress and a “#DeleteFacebook” movement began.
The site has been at the center of political controversies for years now with “fake news” stories reportedly being produced by Russians. In November, the New York Times revealed that Facebook had hired a lobbying firm, Definers Public Affairs, to push negative stories about Facebook’s critics, targeting philanthropist and Democratic donor George Soros, a longtime conservative target.
On Nov. 22, more than a week after the Times’ report, Facebook acknowledged the investigation and announced they had parted ways with the lobbying firm.
With Democrats now having more power in the next Congress, expect the social media site to remain in the news.
The second of our 10 top stories of 2018 will post on Dec. 11.