Press Releases S&Ds Group: Facebook does not make the laws! S&Ds launch pan-European campaign to stop online data abuse

S&Ds Group: Facebook does not make the laws! S&Ds launch pan-European campaign to stop online data abuse

The Socialists and Democrats Group is today launching AdsZuck, a pan-European campaign aimed at ending the abuse of citizens’ personal data by Big Tech companies.

Paul Tang MEP, initiator of the AdsZuck campaign, said:

“We want big tech companies to understand that our private data is not a product! For far too long these companies have been making billions in profits by selling data on our private feelings to third parties. When Facebook asks you “What’s on your mind?”, don’t be fooled – they already know. And this must stop!

“The aim of the AdsZuck campaign is to raise awareness of the power Big Tech has over our private data online. We want to denounce Big Tech’s highly profitable business model, a model that is successful at the expense of publishers and media organisations. We also call on all users of the internet to sign a petition to stop the use of personalised advertising, which infringes people’s online privacy. An alternative model of advertising must be implemented!

“In light of recent developments in Australia, we need to look at a more fundamental approach to fixing the imbalance of market power between publishers and platforms. This is precisely why we are starting this campaign. And to be successful, we need people to get involved. Through the petition and the campaign we want to spread the word that there is an alternative to companies selling our personal data online and that this alternative must be put in place immediately. Just as in advertising every personal detail matters, in this campaign every voice matters. Every signature is a step closer to putting an end to these business models that thrive on our information.”

Ismail Ertug MEP, S&D vice-president for digital Europe, said:

“Facebook’s calculation is simple: the longer someone stays on Facebook, the more advertising it can foist on them, and the more money the platform earns. Polarising content is particularly good at keeping people glued to the screen. We want to break this circle of hate, agitation and disinformation.

“The Digital Services Act and Digital Markets Act are a good step in the right direction, stating that what is illegal offline should also be illegal online. But more must be done. The digital advertising market is now growing more than ever because of the pandemic. We want to break this model of abusing people’s personal information.”

Note to editors:
Please browse the media toolkit you can download here for additional information on the Group’s AdsZuck campaign. You can also check out a video prepared for this initiative here and see the petition here.

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