Why wasn’t the FTC harder on Facebook?

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

On Thursday, the Federal Trade Commission finalized a landmark settlement with Facebook over the company’s alleged privacy malpractices accrued over the past year.

Whether it was Cambridge Analytica or falsely promising user control over its use of facial recognition, Facebook messed up — big time. But after months of negotiations with the FTC, Mark Zuckerberg’s leadership was left virtually untouched, and investors applauded the settlement in the company’s earnings call yesterday evening.

“Good news on the FTC settlement,” one investor said.

That agreement included a $5 billion fine, a penalty that’s small in comparison to the company’s total profits. Mark Zuckerberg (or any future executive) will need to personally sign off on new…

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