To prevent “abuse” of certain groups..Facebook withdraws politics, health and religion from its advertising guidance standards

The Facebook application announced its intention to stop soon the advertising campaigns for its users and the Instagram service of the parent company based on their interests in some sensitive topics, such as gender or political affiliation; This is a significant change for the giant group in the field of electronic advertising.

“We want to better respond to people’s changing expectations about advertisers’ tactics,” said Graham Mudd, Facebook’s vice president of advertising.

A major crisis afflicts the leading social network, which recently changed the name of its parent company to “Meta”, due to leaks of a former Facebook employee accusing it of prioritizing its profits over the safety of its users.

The network generated $84 billion in revenue in 2020, thanks specifically to advertising revenue.

Advertisers accept that their campaigns can be targeted precisely at users; They can choose from thousands of interest categories that categorize people according to the pages they have viewed or the ads they have clicked on.

As of January 19, thousands of categories will be removed, including those related to gender, health problems (chemotherapy or World Diabetes Day), religious practices (Catholic church or religious holidays), political or ethnic affiliations.

This move aims to prevent organizations from abusing these categories, such as encouraging people to do negative or dangerous practices just because they are “gay”, cancer patients, or of a particular religion.

In the statement, Graham Mudd explained that Facebook had “difficulty making” this decision, based on the opinions of civil rights experts and lawmakers.

In January, the Transparency Project denounced advertisements for gun casings or flak jackets targeting members of far-right groups on Facebook prior to the riots in Washington.

And US authorities specialized in housing cases launched lawsuits in 2019 against Facebook; She accused him of allowing real estate classified ads that “exclude people of color, families with children, women, or people with disabilities.”

“We realize that this may affect some companies and organizations,” he said, but he pointed out that other tools could be used, including targeting advertising campaigns to reach people who interacted directly with their brand or based, for example, on the geographical position of users.

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