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Facebook announces that up to 87 million users’ data may have been shared with consulting firm Cambridge Analytica, far higher than the 50 million initially suggested. New study shows the sway fraudulent news may have had on voter behavior in the 2016 presidential election. Cyclist fired for flipping off the President last fall sues her former employer on First Amendment grounds. -Anoosh Gasparian, External Relations Coordinator

The most pressing threats and notable goings-on in free expression today


Facebook Says Cambridge Analytica Harvested Data of Up to 87 Million Users
Facebook had not previously disclosed how many accounts had been harvested by Cambridge Analytica, and how data was used by Russian-backed actors to influence the 2016 presidential election. Zuckerberg is set to testify before Congress next week.

A New Study Suggests Fake News Might Have Won Donald Trump the 2016 Election
A study from researchers at Ohio State University found that fake news probably played a significant role in depressing Hillary Clinton’s support on Election Day in what could be the first look at how fake news affects voter choices.

The Woman Who Got Fired for Flipping Off President Trump Just Sued Her Former Employer
Juli Briskman, the cyclist who flipped off the presidential motorcade and lost her job, now suing, saying the firing violated her First Amendment Rights. “Americans should not be forced to choose between their principles and their paychecks,” Briskman said.

YouTube Shooting: Apparent Motive Highlights Tension with Video ‘Creators’
Nasim Najafi Aghdam, the shooter at YouTube’s Silcon Valley headquarters, claimed the site censored her views through its ‘monetization’ policies. Others have criticised YouTube for its lack of transparency, and standards for advertiser-friendly content.


Russia Not Happy Facebook Erasing Alleged “Troll Factory” Content
The Kremlin blasted Facebook’s move to remove content created by more than 100 accounts deemed to be linked to a Russian “troll farm”. “This Russian agency has repeatedly acted deceptively… we don’t want them on Facebook,” says Zuckerberg.

Fake News Laws are Threatening Free Speech on a Global Scale
As the Malaysian parliament introduces a new law against misinformation, other countries such as India, the UK, and France are planning laws for misinformation as well. Experts say these efforts are short-sighted, or potentially malicious.

How Poland Can Void its Overreaching Holocaust Law
Poland’s constitutional tribunal could strike down the “memory law”, which makes ascribing Holocaust atrocities to the Polish state a crime, as a violation of freedom of expression under the country’s constitution and the European Convention on Human Rights.

The European Union is Trying to Force Facebook to Take Customers’ Privacy Seriously
Next month, Europe will enact a law requiring companies to be transparent with what information they’re gathering and why. Social media users would get the right to access all their personal data, control access and use of it, and even have it deleted.

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