Time to Undo the Wrongs

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Time and again, it has been proven that humans need to be held accountable for their actions. If the accountability is not there, things can go haywire really quick, thus triggering a far-reaching level of devastation. This is largely the case due to our shared tendency of always wanting more. What’s worse is that such a thought process is evident across all the imaginable areas in our lives. Hence, in a bid to neutralize its effects, our governing forces have set up scores of niche regulatory bodies, which are tasked with closely regulating their domain. Now, the act of regulation, as simple as it sounds, is birthed by one substantially layered idea. Even though the core intention here was to eliminate any unscrupulous activities, the concept also brought with it certain limitations, and such a dynamic was never going to sit right with the companies. Cornered by inconsiderate regulations, these companies started bypassing them through one way or the other, leaving regulators behind in the dust. Unfortunately, the scenario won’t change until the arrival of a phenomenon called technology. A creation of technology’s caliber offered a different hope to the regulatory industry, but it was conveniently forgotten that the commercial players were in a much better position to take the advantage of it. Therefore, we saw a huge and rather sudden uptick in these organizations violating the ethical mould through a diverse set of methods. Nevertheless, it all looks firmly towards a shake-up, as the authorities finally catch up with the times. In fact, they are now close enough to trigger some real changes; at least that’s what a latest piece of news conveys.

After inviting some serious criticism over the recent past, Meta has decided to block advertisers from using detailed ad targeting options that project ads on the basis of user’s engagement in sensitive areas like race, ethnicity, religious views, political beliefs, sexual orientation etc. The decision is considered to be motivated by many extensive researches, which shed light on how harmful predatory advertising can be over a long period of time. Furthermore, with more and more regulators planning to ban tracking-based advertising, the pressure on platforms like Meta to get their act together is at an all-time high.

“We’ve heard concerns from experts that targeting options like these could be used in ways that lead to negative experiences for people in underrepresented groups,” Graham Mudd, Meta’s vice president for marketing and ads.

The amendment will officially go into effect on 9th January, 2022. It will be a part of Meta, Instagram, as well as Messenger’s fabric. While the move is significant by all means, the structure of targeting ads through personal details like your age, location, and gender still remains very much in place.

 

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