Friday, 22 September, 2017

Facebook updates ad targeting system after ProPublica discovers anti-semitic categories

Facebook Let Its Advertisers Target “Jew Haters” Facebook Let Advertisers Target Nazis, 'Jew Haters' and Other Anti-Semitic Groups: Report
Saul Franklin | 16 September, 2017, 01:11

The ads and anti-Semitic interest categories were later removed after Facebook was approached by ProPublica for comment. When Facebook approved ProPublica's ads, its system automatically changed the category "Jew hater" to "Antysemityzm", the Polish word for anti-Semitism.

As Facebook has given advertisers greater power to micro-target their messages using a self-service platform, the company has at times failed to ensure they comply with its terms and conditions. As expected, representatives have pledged to "prevent other issues like this from happening in the future" by implementing tighter controls and processes. After contacting Facebook separately about the posts, the companies pulled them down and deleted the ad categories. The news website also found that after it reported the matter to Facebook, the hate topics were removed. On Thursday, these three journalists told the world how "Facebook Enabled Advertisers to Reach 'Jew Haters'".

The nasty ad targeting was uncovered by ProPublica, a "nonprofit newsroom that produces investigative journalism with moral force".

KitGuru Says: While not as scary to me as the two Facebook AI communicating with one another in their own language, it's still a disgusting thought that the social media site is a huge platform for such hate.

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ProPublica informed Facebook about the situation and asked them to take such hateful advertisement categories down, which it did. Using the ad targeting tools, advertisers on Facebook can reportedly target people who hate jews, like gang-rape, want to kill hajis (Muslims), want to burn Jews, follow Nazi parties, fantasize about "pillage the women, rape the village", kill Muslims radicals and other hate topics. When ProPublica searched for categories related to "Hitler", Facebook suggested a field called "Hitler did nothing wrong".

Facebook's ad targeting also garnered criticism previous year when Probublica found that it was able to block people of different races from viewing its ads.

"It was shocking to read about this practice on Facebook, and we are glad Facebook ended it", he said in a statement. "We don't allow inauthentic accounts on Facebook, and as a result, we have since shut down the accounts and Pages we identified that were still active", the company said in a statement at the time.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg wrote in a post last month that, "There is no place for hate in our community".

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