Facebook responds to questions on user information management – Punch Newspapers

Facebook responds to questions on user information management – Punch Newspapers
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Facebook on Tuesday provided responses to some questions regarding how it managed user information in advertising and what control users had over such information.

Mr Rob Goldman, Facebook’s Vice President, Ads, made the responses in the latest edition of Facebook’s Hard Questions, a series that addresses the impact of its products.

“Advertising lets us keep Facebook free, but we are not blind to the challenges this model poses; it requires a steadfast commitment to privacy.

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“Our promise is this: we do not tell advertisers who you are or sell your information to anyone.

“ We think relevant advertising and privacy are not in conflict, and we are committed to doing both well,” he said.

According to Goldman, advertisers can reach Facebook users through information from use of Facebook, information that an advertiser shares with Facebook and information that websites and apps send to Facebook.

He said that age and gender were used to understand what ads users might be interested in.

Goldman said that Facebook would not share information personally identifying its users.

“One can always see the ‘interests’ assigned to one in ad preferences; if one wants, he removes them.’’

According to the official, some websites and apps that users visit may use Facebook tools to make their contents and ads more relevant.

“For example, if an online retailer is using Facebook Pixel, it can ask Facebook to show ads to people who looked at a certain style of shoe or put a pair of shoes into their shopping cart.

“If users do not want the data used to show them ads, they can turn it off in ad preferences.

According to Goldman, advertisers’ space are sold on Facebook as done in television, radio or newspapers.

“We do not sell user information.

“Data collected on Facebook is to give users a better service. For example, we can show you photos from your closest friends at the top of your News Feed, or show you articles about issues that matter most to you, or suggest groups that you might want to join.

“Data also helps us show you better and more relevant ads, and it lets advertisers reach the right people, including millions of small businesses and non-profits who rely on Facebook everyday to reach people that might be interested in their products or causes.

“You cannot opt out of ads altogether because ads are what keep Facebook free, but you do have different options to control how your data can and cannot be used to show you ads. They are all found in ad preferences,” he said.

Goldman said that digital advertising provided a level playing field for small businesses, and enabled them to reach an audience they never could have.

“You get better ads, advertisers get a tailored audience, and everyone on Facebook gets our firm commitment to privacy,” he said.


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