Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg faced tough questions from EU lawmakers during a meeting with the Conference of Presidents of the Political Groups of the European Parliament Tuesday. Lawmakers pressed Facebook’s chief executive on issues ranging from privacy to antitrust, reported on Variety.
Zuckerberg opened the meeting by reiterating many of the same remarks he had been using during recent appearances, once again apologizing for past misdeeds. “I’m committed to getting this right,” he said. Zuckerberg also reminded lawmakers of the economic force of his company in Europe, telling them that Facebook will employ some 10,000 people across 12 European cities by the end of the year.
EU lawmakers were having none of it. “Apologizing is a good thing,” said Manfred Weber, who is a member of the conservative European People’s Party. But apologies alone were not enough. “Now, it is time for acting.”
Antitrust concerns were also brought up by other lawmakers, with Guy Verhofstadt from the Group of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe asking Zuckerberg whether he would open Facebook’s books for lawmakers to examine whether an antitrust problem existed, and whether he would be open to divest from individual services like Messenger.
Zuckerberg responded to these questions by claiming that the company had plenty of competitors. “We exist in a very competitive space,” he said, adding that the average person used 8 different tools for communication, including private messaging apps and more. “It feels like there are new competitors coming up every day,” he said without specifically addressing any suggestions to investigate antitrust concerns.
Full Content: Variety