Facebook Allegedly Still Harvesting Teen Users Data for Ads Targeting Despite Company's Claims It Stopped the Practice
A recent report noted that Facebook continues to harvest teen users' data for the purpose of ad targeting. The company claimed that it was already stopping the practice.
Global Action Plan and Reset Australia's report accuses Facebook of collecting children's personal data to ramp up their advertising delivery system. Fairplay was also involved in the report, according to a CNET report.
In July, Facebook claimed that advertisers would no longer be able to target ads to people under the age of 18 based on their interests or activity on other apps and websites. The changes would mean that advertisers were only allowed to target teens based on their age, gender, and location.
The advocacy groups involved in the study sent a letter to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, accusing the social media platform of misleading the public and lawmakers about how much it restricts advertising targeting teenagers.
Facebook Ads Targeting Using AI
The letter states that it appears Facebook continues to target teens, only now with the power of AI despite saying that it will no longer allow advertisers to selectively target teenagers.
Global Action Plan and Reset Australia went on and accused Facebook of misleading the public and Congress, according to a Daily Mail report. They noted in their letter that replacing targeting selected by advertisers with "optimization selected by a machine learning delivery system" does not represent a demonstrable improvement for children.
The advocacy groups said that is particularly concerning, given that optimization might mean weight loss ads served to teens with emerging eating disorders or an ad being served when a teen's mode suggests that they are vulnerable. The group added that children are more susceptible to the pressure of marketing, as well as less likely to recognize paid-for content.
In addition, they are also less likely to understand how data is used for the purposes of ad targeting as compared to adults.
Children exposed to increased commercial pressures said that it can lead to materialism, parent-child conflict, and life dissatisfaction, according to the group.
Facebook Ads Targeting Practice
Facebook and Instagram are set to stop allowing advertisers to target users based on their history of posting, reading, or liking content related to topics such as sexual orientation, religion, and political beliefs, according to The Guardian report.
In January, Facebook announced that it would remove detailed targeting options that let advertisers seek out users based on their interactions based on health, race or ethnicity, political affiliation, religion, or sexual orientation.
Tech Transparency Project research noted that Facebook had been showing ads for weapons accessories and body armor next to discussions in militia and patriot groups on the platform even after the Capitol riot.
Meta generates 98 percent of its income from advertisers based on the users' online activity. Around two billion people use the Facebook app every day.
Facebook changed its name to Meta. It is currently under criticism over an issue alleging the platform of profiting from the hate speech despite going against its policies, according to Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen.
This article is owned by Latin Post.
Written by: Mary Webber
WATCH: Mike Lee Displays Shocking Ads Facebook Allegedly Approved That Were Seen By Millions Of Teens - from Forbes Breaking News
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