Facebook has decided to remove over 5,000 advertising targeting options including religion and race demographics in order to prevent advertisers from discriminating against people.
Although the social network did previously update its policies to ensure that marketers should not discriminate against race, ethnicity, religion, sex or disability, by removing the actual targeting options the company has taken the next step.
Facebook wrote in a blog post:
“We’re committed to protecting people from discriminatory advertising on our platforms. That’s why we’re removing over 5,000 targeting options to help prevent misuse. While these options have been used in legitimate ways to reach people interested in a certain product or service, we think minimizing the risk of abuse is more important. This includes limiting the ability for advertisers to exclude audiences that relate to attributes such as ethnicity or religion.”
The changes will initially affect US advertisers using the Ads Manager. Advertisers will be required to fill out new certification to continue using Facebook.
Over the coming weeks, Facebook will be expanding the measure across other tools and its APIs.