Report: Facebook Ad Algorithm Discriminates Even When Told Not To

Breitbart | 4/4/2019 | Staff
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Facebook’s advertisement targeting system can’t help but discriminate, according to a report, which claimed it discriminates by race and gender even when told not to.

According to Business Insider, a “research paper published on Wednesday has revealed that Facebook’s ad targeting can discriminate by race and gender, even when advertisers request that their ads are shown to a broad audience.”

Researchers - Dozens - Ads - Platform - Facebook

“The researchers spent $8,500 running dozens of ads on the platform to determine whether Facebook’s ad targeting was skewing certain ads towards or away from certain groups. In one case, they put together ads for houses up for sale or rent in North Carolina,” Business Insider reported. “They found that ads for houses on sale were delivered to an audience that was 75% white users. Ads for houses for rent were shown to a more mixed demographic.”

“They also ran identical ads for houses while varying the image: in one case an advert contained a white family, in the other a black family. The ad when run with the white family was served to 85% white users, while the same ad with the black family was served to an audience of 73% white users,” Business Insider continued. “This is despite the fact the researchers set the ads to be targeted identically.”

Job - Advertisements - Race - Gender - Systems

Job advertisements also reportedly discriminated by race and gender, with the “ad-targeting systems” found to be discriminating “automatically.”

In a statement to Business Insider, a Facebook spokesman declared, “We stand against discrimination in any form. We’ve announced important changes to our ad targeting tools and know that this is only a first step. We’ve been looking at our ad delivery system and have engaged industry leaders, academics, and civil rights experts on this very topic — and we’re exploring more changes.”

Facebook - Advertisers - People

In 2017, it was revealed that Facebook had been allowing advertisers to exclude people...
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