Facebook Caught Unaware

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Facebook has responded to claims that its ads were used to target people who had used hate speech and racism in their social media profiles. Following complaints from a number of people, Facebook said that it would change the way that ads are targeted. Chief operating officer of the company Sheryl Sandberg said that the revelation that its ad-targeting tools were being used to perform such acts was a fail for them. Following this, the company has resulted to adding more oversight and human review. Mrs. Sandberg said that this would help deal with the misuse of the automated services and systems. During this review, the Facebook executive took time to address the advertising issues that have faced Facebook in the recent months. She mentioned that the company would do more to ensure that they deal with offensive content. By offensive comments, she said that she was referring to attacks that singled out people depending on race, ethnicity, and religion. Facebook was responding to claims that had been made by ProPublica last week concerning how its tools allowed marketers to target people who described themselves as Jew haters. These ads also appeared on the timelines of people who used terms such as how to burn Jews.

In a Facebook post, Mrs. Sandberg mentioned that there is no place on Facebook for hate. She was talking as a mother, as a Jew, and as a human being. She further said that she understood the consequences that can arise from hate. She accepted blame saying that they had failed in removing hateful terms from the platform. She said that Facebook never anticipated or never intended for this functionality, and for that reason, she said it should be blamed on them. According to researchers, Facebook is one of the most valuable firms in the world as it offers marketers the chance to directly target their customers. This is possible from a variety of information, the country they live in and even depending on the television show that people watch. However, the company has come under scrutiny for the past few months on how its tools are being used. The latest scrutiny comes from the fake accounts that were bought by Russians to target the US elections. The ads made them approximately $100,000. At the same time, Facebook has received criticism that is has failed in anticipating about how its technology can be misused. Trusting in algorithms have become the norm of the day in Silicon Valley.

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