The major tech companies are under pressure from the European Commission to be more proactive in curbing hate speech and provocation to terrorism. Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) EU is one of the tech firms alongside Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR), Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL) Google’s YouTube and Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) that the European governments are looking up to. They have been asked to put their acts together in the code of conduct or face the possibility of laws.
The order comes in the midst of heightened racial tensions and national security concerns. Germany has particularly been in the spotlight because of the ongoing refugee crisis, which has sparked a chauvinistic backlash. Apparently, the country’s Justice Minister Heiko Maas points out that Facebook should be held legally responsible for any speech published to its platform.
Facebook EU: The tech giants have not been submissive to the code
It is a requirement that all the major US technology companies sign a code of conduct including Facebook EU in an effort to fight online hate speech. The firms are also required to agree to be part of a strengthening partnership with civil society organizations. However, a report commissioned by EU Justice Commissioner Vera Jourova indicates that the tech giants have not satisfactorily obligated to the code.
A majority of them have been struggling to comply with a voluntary code of conduct. Jourová says, “If Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Microsoft want to convince me and the ministers that the non-legislative approach can work, they will have to act quickly and make a strong effort in the coming months.”
The rapid spread of fake news online
There have been serious concerns over the online spread of racist content, which is primarily targeting refugees in Europe. Facebook has been one of the biggest victims. According to Jourová, social media companies need to live up their mandate of sharing responsibility in regards to online radicalization, fake news or illegal hate speech.
Apparently, Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s CEO and COO Sheryl Sandberg have been alleged to break national anti-speech laws. As a result, prosecutors in Munich launched an inquiry into these allegations. Nonetheless, it remains to be seen how committed Facebook EU is to its obligation.
Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) has been experiencing a decline in the number of original content being shared by it’s close to 1.6 billion users, and this is causing major concerns. Original content sharing on Facebook plunged by 21% year-over-year since mid-2015. This has compelled the CEO Mark Zuckerberg, to address the issue at staff meetings, according to unnamed sources.
Facebook users might argue that their newsfeeds are always filled with diverse status, but most of these are links to third party website. Users are not commenting on a night out or tagging other with personal status. This signifies a gradual move from intimate posts to third party content sharing. According to reports from Bloomberg, the company is worried that the social media platform is turning into a link-sharing website.
New social media platforms in the likes of Snapchat and Facebook’s Instagram are providing a much more immediacy and people are sharing what they used to on Facebook, on these platforms. The main reason for the shift might be that some users are not comfortable sharing anecdote or that they checked into a restaurant on Facebook because the updates might be irrelevant to quite a few of their connections.
Facebook has been trying to tackle the decline in original content by introducing a number of features. One such feature is the ‘On This Day’ tool that has received much success since being launched. Facebook is also notifying users of special occasions such as friends’ birthdays, Mother’s day among others and these are also working in the right direction.
Facebook is also planning to tackle the decline by the recently launched Live Video tool. The idea behind addressing the decline is that live video streams will be used to broadcast personal experience. Its success will depend on whether users will embrace it or not. A recently released statement by Facebook, it claimed that the overall level of sharing has remained not only high but also at similar levels as in the previous years. The context, on the other hand, points out to a very different story.
Article: Several analysts have recently weighed on Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB), issuing notes to investors. Brian Wieser of Pivotal Research reiterated their Buy rating on the stock yesterday with a $106.00 price target, or 27.16% upside to the last closing price. According to Tip Ranks, Wieser is ranked 133 out of 3564 analysts. The stocks he covers yield an average of 22.60% growth in the one year following his recommendations.
Ronald Josey of JMP Securities also released a note to investors 2 days ago reiterating the firms Buy stance on Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB).
“We reiterate our Market Outperform rating on top-pick Facebook and raise our price target to $97 from $94 as checks suggest that Facebook continues to take share of total ad budgets, and as we head into Facebook’s developer conference, F8, next week in San Francisco. In this note, we highlight what we believe are likely to be some of the key themes and topics at F8, including: 1) engagement trends and product updates with a focus on events, publisher partners, and local products; 2) ad product innovation given that FB now has 2M+ advertisers, and we note that Facebook launched at least eight new or updated ad products in 1Q, including Topic Data and a mobile Ad Manager app; and 3) stand-alone product updates around Instagram, WhatsApp, and Messenger. We believe that Facebook is well-positioned to continue taking share of the overall advertising environment with multiple near-term catalysts such as video, Instagram, and the Facebook Audience Network, long-term catalysts around Messenger, WhatsApp, and Oculus, coupled with the success in building large audiences across multiple apps given WhatsApp’s 700M+ MAUs, Messenger’s 500M+ MAUs, and Instagram’s 300M+ MAUs”
Josey also added, “We now project 2015 revenue of $16.9B, +42.9% Y/Y ex-FX, EBITDA of $10.5B (+28.4% Y/Y, 62.1% margin), and PF EPS of $2.08. Our $97 price target is based on an unchanged 20x 2016E EV/EBITDA, whereby our EV is $273B, and our EBITDA is $13.6B. We justify our 20x EBITDA multiple given Facebook’s numerous opportunities, and we note our three-year revenue and EBITDA CAGRs of 33% and 29%, respectively. Our previous $94 price target was based on 20x our prior 2016E EBITDA of $13.24B.”
According to TipRanks.com Ronald Josey ranks 640 out of 3564 analysts and has an average one year return of 11.30% on the stocks he covers with a 72% success rate.
Another analyst at Brean Capital has a Bullish stance on the stock. Sarah Hindlian issued a note yesterday with a Buy rating on the stock and $96.00 price target, or 14.72% upside to the last closing price. According to Tip Ranks, Sarah Hindlian is ranked 2258 out of 3564 analysts. The stocks he covers yield an average return of 3.0% in the year following his recommendations.
“Our $96 Target Price is derived from our detailed DCF-based valuation and comparable peer EV/Sales analysis. Our DCF analysis yields a 15.0x forward EV/FY15 Revenue multiple and 23.8x forward EV/FY15 EBITDA multiple, which compares to the company’s current consensus multiples of 13.2x EV/FY15 Sales and 21.5x EV/FY15 EBITDA.”
[PRNewswire] Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) announced that Brian Boland, Vice President, Advertising Technology will participate in the Goldman Sachs Technology and Internet Conference. Facebook uses the investor.fb.com website and Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook Page as means of disclosing material non-public information and for complying with its disclosure obligations under Regulation FD. Accordingly, investors should monitor those resources in addition to following Facebook’s press releases, SEC filings and public conference calls and webcasts.
Founded in 2004, Facebook’s mission is to give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected. People use Facebook to stay connected with friends and family, to discover what’s going on in the world, and to share and express what matters to them.
Of the 31 analysts offering recommendations on Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB), the consensus rating is a Strong Buy. 29 analysts rate the stock as a Buy, 1 has issued Hold ratings while 1 has issued Sell ratings. The one year price target on a consensus basis is $92.65, or around a 16.73% upside to a recently traded price. The most bullish analyst has their estimate at $105.00, which the most bearish sees the stock going to $82.00.
Several top rated analysts according to TipRanks.com which cover the stock include Gene Munster of Piper Jaffray and Victor Anthony of Axiom. Anthony has a Buy rating on the stock with a price target of $105.00. Gene has a Buy rating with a price target of $84.00.
Some similar stocks include Twitter, Meetme and Google. Analysts have a consensus Hold rating on Twitter, a Strong Buy rating on Meetme and a Moderate Buy consensus rating on Google.
Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) is a social networking website company. The Company provides Facebook’s websites and mobile applications enabling customers to stay connected with their friends and family. The Company’s business focuses on creating value for users, marketers, and developers. The Company supports developers to build, grow, and monetize mobile and web applications. The Company’s products include Facebook, Messenger, and Instagram. , mobile app and website enable people to connect, share, discover, and communicate with each other on mobile devices and personal computers. Messenger, a mobile-to-mobile messaging application is available on iPhone Operating System (iOS) and Android phones. Instagram is a mobile application and website that enable people to take photos or videos, customize them with filter effects, and share them with friends and followers. The Company’s subsidiaries include Wit.ai, Inc., a voice-recognition company, and QuickFire Networks, a video-compression company.