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Photo: Robert Fortunato for CBS News

The whistleblower who leaked thousands of internal Facebook documents to the Wall Street Journal revealed herself Sunday on CBS' "60 Minutes" as Frances Haugen, a former lead product manager on the company's civic misinformation team.

Why it matters: On the show, Haugen said she realized this year that she needed to take tens of thousands of pages of documents so that "no one can question that this is real."

  • "Facebook, over and over again, has shown it chooses profit over safety," she said. "It is subsidizing, it is paying for its profits with our safety."

Details: In an interview with CBS' Scott Pelley, Haugen said that her lawyers have filed at least eight complaints with the Securities and Exchange Commission that point to discrepancies between Facebook's internal research and the company's external statements on issues like hate speech and mental health.

  • "The thing I saw at Facebook over and over again was there were conflicts of interest between what was good for the public and what was good for Facebook," she said. "And Facebook, over and over again, chose to optimize for its own interests, like making more money."
  • Haugen also claimed that one internal study suggested that Facebook only took action on 3-5% of hate speech and about 0.6-1% of violence and incitement content on Facebook. Facebook's latest community standards enforcement report says that hate speech only accounted for 0.05% of all content views in Q1.

Haugen, 37, is a long-time Silicon Valley product manager whose previous jobs included stints at Google, Pinterest and Yelp. She resigned from the company in the spring.

  • "I've seen a bunch of social networks and it was substantially worse at Facebook than anything I'd seen before," she told Pelley.
  • In a profile posted by the Wall Street Journal Sunday, Haugen said she sifted through the company's internal social network, Facebook Workplace, to look for examples of places Facebook ignored user safety concerns. She said she expected to be caught.

The other side: "Every day our teams have to balance protecting the right of billions of people to express themselves openly with the need to keep our platform a safe and positive place," Facebook spokesperson Lena Pietsch said in a statement. "We've made important improvements to tackle the spread of misinformation and harmful content. To suggest we encourage bad content, know about it, and do nothing is just not true."

The big picture: Facebook has put global head of safety Antigone Davis and Nick Clegg, its head of global policy, at the center of its defense in response to the documents and reporting leaked to the Journal.

  • In an interview with CNN Sunday, Clegg defended the research Facebook commissioned about the way Instagram impacts the mental health of teens.
  • "Our job is to mitigate the bad, reduce it and amplify the good. And that’s what this research is all about," he said. "I think we do more than anyone else in the industry. I think we do more than any reasonable person can expect to."

Be smart: Facebook's Davis told members of the Senate in a hearing last week that the company wouldn’t retaliate against the whistleblower for going to Congress. That left unanswered whether the company might try to go after her for leaking internal documents to the Wall Street Journal.

What's next: Haugen will testify in a Senate hearing on Tuesday.

Editor's note: This story has been updated with additional comment from Facebook.

Go deeper

House Democrats target algorithms in liability shield bill

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The leader of a powerful House committee is taking aim at websites' liability shield in a new bill that would remove protections if recommended content leads to real-world harm.

The big picture: The bill is the latest attempt to tweak tech's shield after mounting frustrations from both Democrats and Republicans about Facebook, YouTube and Twitter's content moderation practices.

Capitol Police officer indicted for obstructing Jan. 6 investigation

Trump supporters clash with police and security forces as people try to storm the Capitol on Jan. 6. Photo: Brent Stirton/Getty Images

A U.S. Capitol Police officer has been indicted on obstruction of justice charges for allegedly helping hide evidence of a participant's involvement in the Jan. 6 riot.

Driving the news: Officer Michael A. Riley, 50, is accused of telling the unidentified participant, referred to as "Person 1," in the Jan. 6 riot to delete posts from Facebook, which showed them in the Capitol during the attack.

UNC race conscious admissions process upheld by judge

Students walk through the campus of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on Aug. 18, 2020 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Photo: Melissa Sue Gerrits/Getty Images

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill can continue its race conscious admissions process, a federal judge ruled on Monday.

Why it matters: The case could end up in the Supreme Court after the conservative nonprofit Students for Fair Admissions (SFFA) vowed to appeal the judge's ruling that UNC didn't discriminate against against white and Asian American applicants in its policy that it said was designed to increase diversity.