Steve Wozniak speaks out about quitting Facebook: 'I'm just tired of all the ads'
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Steve Wozniak is sick of the spam.
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The Apple co-founder said he will stop using Facebook in protest of how the social media platform and other internet companies handle users' personal information, frequently to inundate them with ads.
Wozniak adjusted his profile on Facebook before deactivating his account and said he was shocked to see the extent of the platform's data collection. His announcement comes as Facebook is under fire for its potential mishandling of user data with Cambridge Analytica, a political consulting firm that allegedly obtained personal information on as many as 87 million users in an effort to influence elections.
"The Cambridge Analytica incident prompted a bunch of articles about Facebook," Wozniak told ABC News. "Everybody knows Facebook makes their money off of you and your data and all that. I'm not naive to that. But I think they do it to a far greater extent than you expect."
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Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is scheduled to testify before Congress on Tuesday and Wednesday about the company's ongoing data-privacy scandal.
And, Wozniak added, he's a person who understands the value of privacy.
"He buys a house and he buys all the houses around it, and then he buys some property in Hawaii and then he buys the parcels on the side of that for his own privacy," Wozniak said. "I wish he would think of me that way as a user of Facebook."
Wozniak said he would rather pay to use Facebook than have his personal information harvested for advertisers.
"I would like to know is there a number that you will totally protect my privacy, not use my information for any advertising, any personally targeted stuff at all," Wozniak said during an interview on "GMA." "What's the price? I'd like to know that price. Oh my gosh, I might pay it if I knew the price. But I have a feeling the price is so outrageously high that people would instantly be shocked at how much Facebook is making off of them."
The Apple co-founder didn't delete his Facebook account entirely but instead opted to deactivate it so he can keep his screen name.
"I want to keep that name for myself in the future in case I ever felt like going back to it, or at least keep and other people out of it," he said.
Zuckerberg has defended his company's practices, saying in a recent interview that the idea Facebook doesn't care about its customers because they don't pay for the service is "extremely glib and not at all aligned with the truth."
Facebook recently has announced changes, including revisions to its privacy settings, to make it easier for users to control who can access their personal information. Zuckerberg told Vox that an advertising-supported business model is the only way a company such as his could connect people around the world regardless of their ability to pay.
"I'm just tired of all the ads and, it’s like spam, you know, nobody likes it," Wozniak said. "You couldn't find a single person who likes it, but it will always exist because the people who make money are the companies that are advertising, and they control the rules. They make the rules.
"I would always raise a child to believe that truth is the most important thing. And I see a lot of dis-truth in the way Facebook deals with people. When, like I said, when I click a like, I think it's between me and the poster, and no, it's between me and an advertiser."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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