Mexican social network could overthrow Facebook

Mexican engineer Joel Hernández has created a digital platform called Openbook to protect users' data

Mexican social network could overthrow Facebook
Openbook will start operating in the Netherlands, where Joel Hernández currently resides - Photo: Taken from Openbook's YouTube page
English 06/09/2018 18:39 Notimex Mexico City Actualizada 18:41
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Joel Hernández, a Mexican software and technology engineer has created a digital platform called Openbook, which will seek to offer a better service to users of social networks and protecting their privacy. The project came up as a response to Mark Zuckerberg’s trial regarding user privacy on Facebook.

“The platform uses an open-source code, there are no secrets, people can just go and see what we are doing in the social network, we won’t trace you, we protect your data, we don’t share your information with anyone and you can make sure of it. This will be a radical change in social network dynamics,” stated Joel in an interview with Notimex.

The idea came up after we thought about the concept of privacy, Joel commented, explaining that Facebook made money by running adds. In order to make more money, the American social network used people’s personal information to run focused adds that appealed to each user’s interest.

“They gather lots of information from the people, they try to guess things and then, with that information, they can know your state of mind, whether or not you’re likely to buy a certain product, your personal relationship with certain people, and many other things through which they will try to sell you products and services,” he stressed.

He explained that data collected by Facebook was even often used to manipulate people. For example “in politics, if they see that you’re more inclined towards the left or right wing, they can show you certain adds for you to change your ideology little by little.”

“By doing so, they are misusing people’s private information. When people complain about this, they just apologize and say things like ‘we are working on it,’ but as years go by, they keep doing the same thing,” stated the engineer, who believes that social networks have stagnated, while Openbook is working on the development of virtual chats with augmented reality.

“We will be the first company to do this. All users’ chats will be encrypted, we won’t be able to read what you write to your family or anyone else. We have the best cryptographer working with us, Phil Zimmermann, who is famous for having encrypted the world’s most famous e-mail protocol,” he added.

Openbook will start operating in the Netherlands, where Joel Hernández currently resides. The company will be protected by the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which aims to unify and strengthen data protection for individuals in the European Union.


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