Cambridge Analytica

I must confess, I haven’t read up on this  thoroughly, so my information on the case is made of of headlines and teasers and comments.  Partly, it’s because my time has been limited lately and I’ve been trying to follow other news stories, but mostly I’m  just  waiting for the  dust to settle a bit  before going  in.
So, everything that’s said in this evening’s column should  be taken  with  a grain of  salt, probably a whole bunch of grains of  salt, but I think this is much ado about something fairly close to nothing.
First, Facebook has never hid the fact that they were willing to sell your data.  It is, in fact, what they do.  It’s how they make their money.  While lots of people now are outraged and threatening to leave Facebook, it’s nothing compared to the number who would leave if they started charging $10 a month for a membership fee.  So, that’s the deal.  We get the free service, they get to  sell our  information to advertisers.  It makes sense.  I get more ads than I’d like directed to  old men, but I can’t complain too  much.  I am the natural target for those ads.
I’m not even sure that Cambridge Analytica did anything illegal.  Is political advertising illegal?  I’m pretty sure  it’s not, although maybe it should be.  Did Facebook’s people, or  the Cambridge Analytica people, actually work with Trump’s campaign?  I suppose that might be a little bit suspicious, especially  since Cambridge Analytica (guessing by the name) is a British firm.  Still, are we  going to start distrusting them like we do the  Russians?
Also, (and here is where I really need to read up a bit, and  will before I start typing away again) what were the ads like?  If they were anything like the ones put out by  the Troll farm  in St.  Petersburg, then the main problem  we have is that American voters are really, really  stupid.
I’m fairly sure that is  actually true.  But, it’s not Mark  Zuckerberg’s  fault.

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