For the men and women over at Facebook headquarters in Menlo Park, CA., weathering storm after storm has become quite routine in recent years. From running afoul of the European Union's (EU) General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) to facing criminal investigations by the United States (U.S.) government regarding data deals with other tech magnates, it seems that controversy is always in style for the world's largest social media platform.
Thanks to a recent filing by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), you can add yet another patch of turmoil to Facebook's recent tumultuous journey.
As Sara Salinas of CNBC reports, HUD – and by extension, the Trump administration – has taken aim at Facebook due to reports of discriminatory advertising practices occurring within this social platform's ad network. As a recent lawsuit with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) uncovered, Facebook allowed employers and landlords to limit target advertising audiences related to housing opportunities based on race, ethnicity, and even gender.
Going a step deeper, some advertisers also excluded potential viewers on the basis of languages spoken and the individual's current geographic location.
“Facebook is discriminating against people based upon who they are and where they live. Using a computer to limit a person’s housing choices can be just as discriminatory as slamming a door in someone’s face.”– HUD Secretary Ben Carson
While monetary damages, which HUD intends to pursue up to the "maximum civil penalty" will definitely put a damper on Facebook's financials, it is far from the most impactful problem facing the social network in the wake of this breaking story. Considering that the bulk of Facebook's revenue comes from the sale of ads and promoted posts, taking another blow to its credibility (and potentially driving away advertisers who are turned off by the non-stop stream of scandals surrounding this organization) could end up costing the company far more than any fine, fee, or penalty levied by the Trump administration or HUD.
Should your dealership continue to use Facebook advertising as part of its digital outreach program in the wake of this latest scandal facing its ad network? What happens next in the ongoing battle between the U.S. government and one of the most influential companies in Silicon Valley as user privacy and online rights continue to take center stage in congressional meetings and court hearings?
To answer these questions, and learn even more about how Facebook aided and abetted discriminatory advertising practices on its ad network, feel free to check out the complete story from Salinas on the other side of the link provided down below.