- “I did buy crypto at the right time,” says Frances Haugen, the whistleblower taking on tech giant Facebook.
- Reports show Haugen receives cryptocurrencies from well-known Big Tech critic Pierre Omidyar, but Haugen says this covers transport, logistics, and communication expenses.
More and more people are leaning into cryptocurrencies due to social, political, and economic benefits. These include cheap and swift transactions, reduced theft of personal data, inflationary hedge, and the absence of chargebacks.
According to Statista.com, the number of blockchain users has increased between 2015 and 2021 from 3.7 million to 34.3 million.
Recent reports now show that the now-famous Facebook whistleblower, Frances Haugen, supports herself with cryptocurrencies. Speaking to The New York Times, Haugen says she is financially stable due to her earlier investments in crypto. she said;
For the foreseeable future, I’m fine, because I did buy crypto at the right time,
Cryptocurrencies currently support Facebook’s whistleblower
Additionally, she has moved to Puerto Rico to join her “crypto friends” apart from dealing with an ongoing health issue. However, she did not specify which cryptocurrency or cryptocurrencies she had purchased.
Of note, the former Facebook employee started to work for the company in June 2019 until May this year. She served the giant tech company as lead product manager for the civic misinformation team. However, during her tenure, the Harvard graduate says she became “increasingly alarmed” by Facebook’s policies and practices.
Facebook, over and over again, has shown it chooses profit over safety.
For months, Haugen anonymously leaked internal Facebook documents to The Wall Street Journal. It was not until Oct. 3 that she revealed herself publicly as the Facebook whistleblower through 60 Minutes news broadcast. She later testified before the US Senate Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety, and Data Security. Facebook, also the owner of leading social platforms Instagram and WhatsApp, saw its stocks tumble down 5 percent thereafter.
On the flipside
That said, Haugen recently clarified the use of cryptocurrency investments after questions arose on the source of her whistleblower-funding following a Politico report last week. The report said Haugen was founded by Pierre Omidyar, founder of eBay and a vocal critic of Big Tech.
Omidyar’s foundation, Luminate, donated $US150,000 ($AU200,977) to the non-profit that now presides Haugen’s legal representation. The Foundation is also providing her government and press relations in Europe. Additionally, Haugen’s top American PR representative, Bill Burton, hails from the Center for Humane Technology, which is funded by Omidyar.
Nevertheless, Haugen asserts using the funds from Omidyar’s non-profits for travel and similar expenses in relation to exposing Facebook’s malpractices. She says that otherwise, she supports herself with personal crypto investments.
A spokesperson from Luminate made similar statements about Omidyar Group’s financial support, adding that,
When Frances Haugen went public Luminate decided to step forward and directly support her efforts to promote a broad public debate about the issues that the disclosures raise.