Facebook — one of the world’s largest advertising companies — magnanimously acknowledges that in your life on the internet, you’ve probably encountered some bad ads. And you almost certainly have, because online advertising can be obtrusive, creepy, and irritating to say the least. But Facebook thinks that they are so far ahead of the pack that you will actually want to see their ads, and so they’re going to circumvent your ad-blocker for your own good.
Ah, Facebook’s News Feed. It changes frequently in order keep you better updated on your friends’ lives, the news of the world, and other events. But one thing you’re likely see a bit less of soon: those cleverly written headlines just begging to be clicked. The social network announced Thursday that it would revamp its News Feed algorithm to reduce the number of clickbait headlines you see. [More]
You know what giant corporations really hate to do? Spend lots of their revenue on taxes. And you know what they have to do anyway? Exactly that. But the IRS is saying that Facebook may not have done enough of it, in past years, and may be on the hook for a big fat chunk of cash overdue to the U.S. government.
It’s so easy to buy apps and then buy even more stuff within those apps, even a kid can do it. Which is exactly why a court has ordered Facebook to refund parents whose children made unapproved app purchases while using the social media network. [More]
Facebook is joining the list of apps that allow users to send messages that only exist for a certain amount of time: after testing a self-destructing function late last year, the social media company has announced an official test of “Secret Conversations” in Messenger that also features end-to-end encryption. [More]
It’s one thing if an online ad is misleading or misrepresents the site that you click on, but what happens when you order an item that isn’t as promised? As overseas clothing companies that market solely through Facebook have proliferated, some customers blame Facebook, even though the site doesn’t vet the products and services of every advertiser. Now, at least, Facebook wants to listen if you’re scammed or misled by an ad on the site. [More]
Update: In a second statement to Fusion, Facebook retracted its original statement that location is one of the ways in which it suggests who you may wish to follow, and now says, “We’re not using location data, such as device location and location information you add to your profile, to suggest people you may know. We may show you people based on mutual friends, work and education information, networks you are part of, contacts you’ve imported and other factors.”
Though it may seem like spam messages are the stuff of giant networks of evilly cackling robots who are hell bent on beleaguering innocent people with offers for cheap erectile dysfunction medications, sometimes it’s just a human hacker. One of those humans now has more than two years of jail time to look forward to after sending more than 27 million spam messages through Facebook. [More]
Odds are very, very good that you’ve been part of a scientific research experiment in the past few years. Probably more than 70% likely if you’re on the internet at all, and approaching 100% if you’re under 30. Why? Because those are the percentages of Americans who use Facebook… which is constantly conducting some of the largest-scale behavioral research ever done.
If you’ve been syncing your phone’s photos to your Facebook account but don’t want to download the social media’s “Moments” picture app, prepare to back that stuff up soon. [More]
It doesn’t matter whether you’re happy about it or not: Instagram is switching your feed to an algorithmic one, showing you new posts in the order that the service believes you’ll like them. Users are not super thrilled about this, but Instagram tried to assure users that we’ll like it, even if we think we won’t. [More]
Facebook announced in recent weeks that they’re expanding their advertising empire. With that change, came a stealthy new privacy setting for users — one that all of us are opted-in to by default.
Sometimes it’s a bad thing when a robot gets invented to do a human job. And other times, it can be a relief, because the job was really terrible for any human to do. And that’s the tactic Facebook is taking with content moderation now, getting its AI to identify and “quarantine” offensive content before any human has to.