The monstrosities that the various Big Tech companies have enabled are beyond imagination for the regular patriotic, law-abiding American citizens, and of those, Facebook and its subsidiaries like Instagram are probably the most egregious, as a series of revelations by a couple of whistleblowers have shown in recent days and weeks.
So much so that even a fellow Big Tech company, Apple, was outraged in at least one instance: back in 2019, Apple threatened to nix the Facebook and Instagram apps from its App Store – because it turned out that they were being used as an “online slave market.”
More specifically, rich Middle Eastern men were buying poor Asian and African maids from countries such as the Philippines through Facebook and Instagram apps.
Maid slave market on Instagram
This much has been revealed by documents cited on Monday by AP and The Daily Mail from among the trove leaked by whistleblower Frances Haugen, a former high-ranking Facebook employee who recently testified before Congress that Mark Zuckerberg’s company is only interested in gigantic profits while wreaking havoc upon the mental state of American youth and the condition of American democracy.
The revelations expose the plight of poor women traded as modern-day slaves through the convenience of Facebook and Instagram.
According to the cited reports as well as Facebook’s internal documents, the vulnerable domestic workers are based in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and Egypt.
Apply decided not to do good on its threat to scrap the Facebook and Instagram apps from its store only after Facebook stopped about 1,000 accounts that were advertising the modern day-slave women with videos showing them and their written biographies.
The documents reveal that Facebook had been aware of the problem a year before Apple threatened it, and had even codenamed it as “HEx”, an abbreviation for “human exploitation.”
Numerous reports in recent years have disclosed various aspects of the wretched fate of Asian and African maids in the said Middle Eastern countries as many of them evidently are routinely getting beaten, and abused, and their passports are taken away by the households employing them.
In 2018, the Philippine government imposed briefly a ban on prospective maids going to the said countries to find work.
However, subsequently, the prohibition was rescinded, likely because the remittances sent back home by the Filipino maids make up a whopping 10% of their home country’s GDP.
Acting only under Apple’s pressure and still to no avail
The leaked internal Facebook documents include a 2019 analysis provided now to the Securities and Exchange Commission by whistleblower Frances Haugen, which makes it clear that the removal of the Facebook and Instagram apps from the Apple Store would have had “potentially severe consequences” for Zuckerberg’s business empire.
Facebook also discovered that about three-fourths of all posts advertising the sale of maids were posted on Instagram.
The Facebook platform itself was used mostly in order to provide links to the outside websites showcasing domestic staff for sale.
The documents reveal further that Instagram employees who entered the app inboxes of maids found numerous messages of concern as they shared stories of having their passports confiscated, being locked in the home as they were working, or sharing fears of sexual and physical abuse.
Regardless of Facebook’s eventual crackdown forced by Apple’s app removal threats, The Daily Mail says the social media site still features numerous accounts with photographs of maids from South Asia and Africa who are “for sale.”