Never Perfect, Indeed

Alfred Ng and Corin Faife, reporting for The Markup:

Facebook says it will remove ads from several companies that violated its anti-discrimination policy after The Markup discovered companies targeting financial services to specific age groups on the platform. Facebook policy prohibits advertisers from discriminating by age when running ads for things like credit cards and loans.

The Markup’s report was published on April 29. Facebook didn’t respond to multiple requests for comment but reached out to The Markup a day after publication to say that it has since taken action.

“We’re reviewing and removing ads from these businesses that ran in violation of this policy,” Tom Channick, a Facebook communications manager, said in an email sent on Friday afternoon to another Markup reporter, who hadn’t worked on the article. “Our enforcement is never perfect since machines and human reviewers make mistakes, but we’re always working to improve.”

Exactly the sort of thing Mark Hurst was referring to regarding Facebook’s quick takedown of ads from Signal that simply revealed how much they know about you. Discriminatory financial services ads? Give Facebook a week to look into it. Ads that reveal just how creepy surveillance tracking is? They closed Signal’s advertising account.

Tuesday, 4 May 2021