WASHINGTON, DC — Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg’s “dorm room defense” is not the lifeline it used to be.
The 36-year-old appeared in court on Monday in the opening session of an antitrust case that pits Facebook opposite 40 state attorneys general and the Federal Trade Commission.
The trial kicked off with an opening statement from Zuckerberg laden with the same ploys to downplay the social media giant’s role in the exploitation of user data, support for neo-Nazi’s, sympathy to the Kremlin’s efforts to compromise US elections, and live streams of actual mass murders of innocent people as nothing more than an innocuous “dorm room idea.”
But this time, Zuckerberg’s defense was met with genuine anger, as prosecutor Ahmed Diab scolded him for “playing dumb.”
“Sir, you are an actual psychopathic mastermind of an internet powerhouse worth more than 800 billion dollars. I beg you, do not disrespect the dignity of this court by comparing it to some kind of worthless business fraternity circa 2003.”
A spokesperson for the young CEO reported that he was flustered by Diab’s challenge, as the “dorm room defense” has worked on the billions of senators, members of congress, federal regulators, and holy deities who “have half-heartedly tried and failed to rein Facebook in over the past ten plus years for egregiously nefarious activities that have gotten people killed and destroyed the institutional integrity of democracies around the world.”
But this didn’t stop Zuckerberg’s defense team from deploying the dorm room defense throughout the proceedings.
A particular exchange where defense attorney Larry Hayes, deflected from accusations that Facebook played a role in stirring up anti-Muslim sentiment in Myanmar by referencing ping pong games in Zuckerberg’s dorm room sent Diab into a frenzy.
“I need you to shut the fuck up about your dorm room, you’re 36. Your platform continues to provide a space for war criminals, Nazis, child molesters, and ethnic cleansers to broadcast their opinions and contribute to instability and violence because that’s where you make your money. Mind you, that money is all about the exploitation and mining of user’s personal data for behavioral advertising. You’re a 36 year-old-asshole that has manipulated the world for the worse. So stop talking about Facebook like it’s still a virtual network for your sick, sad, neglected, prepubescent ego to make three friends!”
While Diab is being hailed by observers as a hero, his outburst found him in contempt of court. The defense team also called the court’s attention to the fact that this is an antitrust case, rendering Diab’s line of prosecution and anything related to Facebook’s activities in the realm of aiding and abetting violent racism, mass murders, and mass genocide, among others, completely irrelevant.
The trial is expected to resume early next month.