According to the Wall Street Journal, Facebook is aware of the extent of “problematic use” or “internet addiction” among its users.
While the company’s team identified ways to curb the problem for the benefit of users, Facebook followed only some of the steps outlined and decided to disband the team in 2019.
Based on the internal document leaked to Frances Haugen, the WSJ report shows that Facebook’s internal research found that one in eight users make a positive remark on compulsive social media use that affects their sleep, work and relationships.
Pratiti Raychoudhury, vice president of research at Facebook’s new parent company Meta, said the research had been misrepresented in response to the latest WSJ report.
She explained that Facebook “has been engaged and supportive throughout our multiyear effort to better understand and empower people who use our services to manage problematic use. That’s why this work has taken place over multiple years, including now.” In her argument, “problematic use does not equal addiction.”