To mark the end of Yom Kippur, Mark Zuckerberg has shared a brief post on Facebook asking for forgiveness from anyone he may have hurt in the past year. That’s a pretty standard thing to say when reflecting on mistakes during a particularly holy day, but Zuckerberg then made a surprising addition by also seeking forgiveness for any of the ways that his work has been “used to divide people rather than bring us together.” In other words, he’s apologizing for the ways that Facebook has made our lives worse, which is a wholly surprising admission of guilt from someone in the tech world. Usually, it’s mankind that fails to recognize the way that a juice machine or whatever can improve our stupid lives, so for someone like Zuckerberg to step forward and admit that maybe the thing he made might have been a terrible mistake is a pretty bold move.
This comes after Facebook has had a particularly eye-opening year in the wake of the presidential election, with the massive social networking site being forced to reckon with the fact that it facilitated the spread of actual fake news that probably impacted the election, that advertisers were able to specifically target anti-Semitic users, and—most recently—that it sold a whole bunch of political ads to Russian operatives who were trying to influence U.S. voters.
Meanwhile, Twitter is doubling the character limit and admitting that it loves keeping Donald Trump around because of his “newsworthy” racism, so maybe it should think about apologizing at some point.