research app

The news of Facebook paying teens using IOS devices to download a “Facebook Research App” was met with heavy controversy by the public and companies alike. Soon after the news broke The Verge received an update from Facebook stating they were removing the app off of all IOS devices.

TechCrunch releasedthe original report, where they mentioned Facebook was “spying” on teenagers who opted to use the app. Facebook took issue with this terminology, an item they expressed in their recent statement.

“It wasn’t ‘spying’ as all of the people who signed up to participate went through a clear onboarding process asking for their permission and were paid to participate. Finally, less than 5 percent of the people who chose to participate in this market research program were teens. All of them with signed parental consent forms.”

This claim suggests that Facebook never intended to hide this program. Facebook even marketed it as “Facebook Research from the start. However, The Verge points out that the statement leaves out certain details. For example, the ‘consent’ form is merely a screen that anyone can tap through.

Apple Gets Involved

Following the report, Apple opted to invalidate every testing app that Facebook uses within their system. Suddenly Facebook employees were unable to access apps they use for work on a day to day basis.

While it was a bold move by Apple, it was hardly surprising. Apple’s own Tim Cook made waves in the media when he spoke about the “Data Industrial Complex” at the 40th International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners. Since then the company has become increasingly vocal about the way large companies are managing user data.

Apple didn’t allow their own privacy run-in involving a bug that allowed people to listen in on other IOS devices through FaceTime, to halt their new regulative actions.

“It’s weird but probably necessary/inevitable that Apple is now Facebook’s de facto privacy regulator,”

Tweet -The New York Times’ Kevin Roose

For those who have been wanting Facebook to be less involved with consumer data, Apple’s decision may feel vindicated. However, concerns are already rising as it becomes clear the power Apple hold over one of its competitors.

“One giant platform declared another giant platform’s market research program inappropriate, then disappeared it with a Thanos-style finger snap.”

The Verge

What You Can Do

While Facebook has had its share of bad press in the past their actions may not be the only company you should pay attention to. However you may feel about Apple’s display of power, it is important to remain engaged in the future of data, more importantly, the Digital You.

At ScoresMatter we keep you up to date with all thing involving the Digital You. Whether it is the latest breach or tips on how you can improve your credit, we are here to help each digital footprint you take to be better than the last.

Tap into the Digital You at ScoresMatter.