Facebook said it complied with European Union data protection laws, but Richard Allan, the company's vice-president of policy solutions who appeared in Zuckerberg's stead, admitted it had made mistakes. Representatives from the U.K., Canada, France, Argentina, Singapore, Ireland, Belgium, Brazil and Latvia were all in attendance.
Damian Collins, who heads the Parliament's Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee, noted at a press conference that he hopes to make the documents public "very soon" though he couldn't give an exact date.
"If it's not down, it should be", Allan told Tong before the lawmaker revealed a communication from Facebook saying the post in question did not actually violate the company's policies.
Charlie Angus, a lawmaker from Canada, opened the hearing with a broadside.
He said he took responsibility for deciding who appeared at which committee.
Facebook knew about a possible cyber attack on the platform linked to Russian Federation years before they were made public, according to a leading MP in charge of holding the social network to account over issues of disinformation on the platform.
Facebook FB.O came under fire on Tuesday from lawmakers from several countries who accused the firm of undermining democratic institutions and left out an empty chair for chief executive Mark Zuckerberg after he declined to be questioned.
A view of the International Grand Committee with representation from nine countries' parliaments and Mark Zuckerberg's non-attendance at the U.K. Parliament in London on November 27, 2018. Asked how Zuckerberg's absence might appear, though, Allan later said it was "not great".
"An engineer at Facebook notified the company in October 2014 that entities with Russian IP have been using a Pinterest API key to pull over 3 billion data points a day", he said.More news: ‘Sanskari Stark’ Sophie Turner Wore Red Desi Attire For PC’s Puja
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Facebook said comments were taken out of context and "no evidence of specific Russian activity" had been found at that time. According to internal company documents, a Facebook engineer warned the social media giant of a data issue involving Russian Federation in 2014 - earlier than Facebook has previously publicly admitted.
The documents were not released at the hearing, but the member, Damion Collins, referenced them during questioning.
"Unless you're going to turn off the internet, I'm not confident that people would be better off in a world where Facebook is not able-however imperfectly-to offer services where we spent 15 learning how to do", he said.
In response, Allan said at the hearing that the documents generally are "potentially misleading".
Zuckerberg's company is reeling from a series of crises linked to its handling of alleged Russian meddling in both the 2016 U.S. presidential election and that year's British referendum on leaving the European Union.
Ted Kramer founded Six4Three with an app called Pikinis that combed Facebook pages for photos of women in bikinis.
"Our view is when you signed up for Facebook it was sufficiently clear that as part of the social experience that when you shared information with friends that they might share it on", Allan said.
Lawmakers from Europe, the Americas and Asia pummeled Allan with questions, targeting the company's business model, its willingness to cooperate with governments and the steps it is taking to ensure it does not spread misinformation.