Facebook will not be the value of the US stock market that is the exception to the rule that all securities are likely to have effervescent rises, and their consequent deep corrections. In fact, in the last days the price of the famous social network has lived installed in a kind of roller coaster, it is true that we have already seen in the action on previous occasions.
But this time the thing happens from a simple market trend, or an exaggerated reaction to coporative news of value. On this occasion, the company's analysis shows the result that it can be found at a real crossroads, in which is trying to reinvent itself or … runs the risk of ending up suffering (or at least suffering not yours during a good season).
Facebook: from the network between university friends to the social emporium and online advertising
As far as market capitalization is concerned, Facebook is the jewel in the crown of the most virtual cyber-economy, and its stock market value exceeds the exorbitant figure of more than half a billion dollars. The virtual business is a great business in the era of social networks (and cyber-social war, by the way), and Facebook must know how to recognize the merit it had to be able to see the great market that opened before its rudimentary and primitive network of university contacts, and having transformed the need for social interaction into a true economic emporium certainly visionary.
At this point, it must be said that his rise to the skies of world business leadership has not been without controversy almost at any time, and the privacy scandals, security breaches, as well as how intrusive the social network is in our lives and with our information have been almost a constant. A case that is especially revealing is for example the case of the censurable profiles “in the shadow” of Facebook, whereby The social network collects information even from simple Internet users who do not even have an open account on the social network. Non-consensual intrusion raised to maximum power, let's go.
But every business is likely to become mature at any time, just as every company is likely to make bulk mistakes that can make it wobble dangerously, and even the solid Facebook was not going to be an exception. There have been several bulky falls that the market has seen in this value, but the recent one has a special strategic relevance, because it ends up marking a clear line from which, or Facebook has definitely entered in the phase of developing your business in a fully mature market, or finally your little respect for privacy of its users and their security has finally begun to pass a threatening bill (on the other hand, pending for some time).
Facebook has been living permanently installed in the (very justified) controversy for years
In the most “techie” communities and perfectly aware of the ins and outs of the technological world, the simple act of pronouncing the name of Facebook produces hives. And is that scandals of all kinds starring the blue social network (including Cambridge Analytica is really the most embarrassing and disturbing) are related to the economy of the data, the information of the citizens, and also with the disrespectful use with which the company did business or exposed information at least to be considered private.
All this has made the technological community that saw him be born has turned his back, and have even come to star massive derecognition of their Facebook accounts to try to sensitize the general public, usually very little aware of what is cooked between bits behind the browser of their screens.
But the bulky mistakes Facebook has committed, either by action or by omission, go far beyond the company's simple policies on key issues for its social business. The issue goes fully into the clear corporate and even social responsibility (in the sense of the Society as such), and shamefully Zuckerberg has not deigned to respond neither clearly nor with due respect to the awkward questions of both the United States Congress like the also lacerating questions of the British Parliament.
These interventions (or sometimes “no” interventions) by Zuckerberg before the political leaders of the highest level have come to the thread of both mass manipulation of elections of the United States who gave victory to the always controversial president Trump, or the electoral interference that has led to United Kingdom to the very edge of the cliffafter the fatal and also massively manipulated Brexit referendum.
In both cases, experts from the sector (and even the intelligence agencies themselves) point to the prominent role played by the social network Facebook as a mass manipulation channel for the electorate, leaving pending clarification if its catalysis was totally unconscious, or if it could simply look the other way first of all what in those electoral calls flooded the famous social network. The little collaboration and the total lack of transparency with which Facebook has responded to those dark events do not predict anything good for the controversial company.
Now the market passes (once again) Facebook bill, but this time the reasons seem to be very very serious
As we said before, there have been few times when Facebook has starred strong declines in the stock market following one of the many controversies, which have surrounded the controversial social network since its birth. Among them is the historic fall that this company starred in the summer of 2018, collapsing nothing more and nothing less than 19%, leaving behind the wake of the volatilization in the market of a whopping 120,000 million dollars, in which It was the biggest drop in the history of the bags.
But as we also told you, the last of those descents took place only a few days ago, and with it The company volatilized some 30,000 million dollars from investors in the market, with a very respectable 6% drop. It may be that the figures of now, significantly lower than the previous ones, may seem not to justify an analysis, but as in any fall, the motives vary from one to another, and in fact those that we find this time on the covers and Facebook's corporate statements are especially disturbing.
The origin of the stock market crash is now in the publication of the latest corporate results of Facebook, which, as you can guess, have not been good at all. The figures in the company's accounts reveal how The company's expenses in 2019 suffer a bulky 51% increase over those of 2018, which has severely cut off the benefits of the social network. From the company itself, they justify themselves by saying that these additional costs are for the actions and developments they are undertaking to improve the privacy and security of their users. But while these explanations are already unsettling (as we will see later), the truth is that they are not at all even sufficient. The fact is that the increase in expenses coincides with a strong erosion of the company's operating margin, which drops from 45% of 2018 to 34% of 2019.
On Facebook, there are also many other questions that affect their more existential future. Among them is the great uncertainty that the impact of the future tightening of legislation and measures to improve the privacy and security of citizens means for the blue social company. It is a general trend worldwide that It was championed from the beginning by a visionary Europe, always guarantor of the online rights of all Europeans, but now it is especially significant because of its arrival in the US soil itself.
We must also echo here from some somewhat more optimistic opinions, which attribute the fall of Facebook that the company is falling victim to its own success, as well as the fact that it operates in a market that is beginning to be somewhat mature. Actually, from these lines we do not just agree with this interpretation, since the business figures of Facebook are in sight. It is not at all crazy to think that, in reality, these types of companies could still have a lot of business and travel ahead. To do this, they should at least know how to correctly face the challenge of eating. a market that still presents great opportunities and that is really massive, but for what it takes a previous dose of more and better innovation (Woe to the companies that are actually themselves that become mature, less innovative and less agile!).
But incredible as it may seem, the questions that now hang over Facebook are even more disturbing than those that could be raised so far
Actually, given the often lack of transparency of this social company and its opacity, the really important of the issues related to Facebook are no longer the few and mostly useless answers that the company gives to the questions that are being asked from different estates even political. Unfortunately, here the really important thing is the questions, many of which remain scandalously unanswered, at least minimally convincing. And in this sense, from these lines here goes our humble contribution to try to shed some light (or rather shadow) on a company that responds much less than that for which it should respond towards the rights of citizens and the health of our democracies and socio-economic systems.
One of the questions that can be raised now before Facebook literally cries out to heaven, and it is not that it is already related to all the security and privacy that are supposed to offer us in the near future, thanks to all that massive investment of money in functions related to its outrageously very improved management of the privacy and security of its users (and non-users). The issue is rather if they will not simply be walking towards market standards already common in many other companies, which they have embarrassingly been ignoring so far, and above all What were they doing so far with the security and privacy of our data so that now that they are serious about it they must dedicate so many millions of dollars to fix “the mess”?
But much less the questions that we can ask ourselves from this point remain here, and we can continue telling Zuckerberg for example that he should answer and collaborate with the information he has available for that purpose, and asking him if the scandals in style from Cambridge Analytica are what definitely are causing the decline of consolidated democraciesHow was the United Kingdom? Do youWhy the company does not collaborate fully with the authorities British to clarify those dark anti-democratic events, and Zuckerberg has not even deigned to appear properly before the British Parliament? Do youWhat confidence can you give for the future A company whose past mostly only shows a total lack of respect for our data and our privacy? …
And the million dollar question (never better) would be: Can users be given security and privacy with minimum quality standards, when at the end of the day you sell it to themselves? One really lacks a public recognition of the terrible mistakes made in the past, and a very close collaboration with the competent authorities to effectively fight against the systemic corrosion with which propaganda is ending our democracies, one after another. Then they will complain about measures such as those announced by Elizabeth Warren, which would allow criminally accusing collaborative companies with the derision of propaganda; but nevertheless several of the affected companies have wasted dozens of occasions so that this did not make any fault. Rather than tearing their clothes, some should take them off with the mask: only in this way could we speak to their faces from that moment on.. Continue dancing as if nothing to the sound of this particular masquerade only makes the whole sector seem like a real carnival.