-Facebook "whitelisted" certain companies, meaning that they still had full access to users' friends data after platform changes in 2014/15, including Airbnb, Netflix, and Badoo.
However, The Verge reports that according to the emails Facebook developers tried finding ways to manipulate Android's data permissions so that it could automatically enrol users. "I think we leak info to developers, but I just can't think of any instances where that data has leaked from developer to developer and caused real issue for us", chief executive Mark Zuckerberg said in 2012, describing nearly exactly the kind of behaviour that would lead to the Cambridge Analytica scandal years later.
In January 2013, Facebook VP Justin Osofsky emailed Zuckerberg about the now-defunct social media app Vine, suggesting that Facebook "shut down their friends API access".
Facebook, in an e-mailed statement to Ad Age, continued to maintain that the company "has never sold people's data" The e-mails, however, do paint a picture of a company concerned by "reciprocity"-what value it could get by allowing developers to build on its platform and receive access to information on users".
Mr. Collins also said the material showed that Facebook began continuously uploading calls and texts from Android phone users in 2015 and that the company "planned to make it as hard of possible for users to know that this was one of the underlying features of the upgrade of their app". Facebook's platform, he said, "takes a user and turns them into a more engaged user through adding real identity and social connections to them".
United Kingdom lawmakers obtained the e-mails from the developer of a now-defunct app that is suing Facebook in California.
"We don't feel we have had straight answers from Facebook on these important issues, which is why we are releasing the documents", said Collins in a Twitter post accompanying the published emails.
Mr Zuckerberg posted his own response on Facebook after the publication of the documents, saying the company had limited its access to certain apps and made other changes to prevent abuse of its platform.
Facebook said it stood by its deliberations and decisions, but noted that it would relax one "out-of-date" policy that restricted competitors' use of its data.
By sending all internet use by apps on users' iPhones via Facebook's servers the company was able to identify popular apps, the UK Guardian newspaper reported.
The documents were brought to light by U.S. software company Six4Three, which were gathered as part of a legal case against the social network. What's more, a 2018 review of the feature found that "the information is not as useful after about a year", which the company argues is really only good for low level tasks like sorting contact lists.
Facebook has seen nearly no end to public scrutiny since the Cambridge Analytica scandal.
"Other ideas we considered but decided against included charging developers for usage of our platform, similar to how developers pay to use Amazon AWS or Google Cloud", he wrote. According to Bloomberg, the California courts sealed the emails, but the United Kingdom compelled the Six4Three founder to hand over a laptop containing the emails, which were acquired during discovery, when the founder visited London.
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