Facebook follows through on promise and launches new review policy following #FBrape campaign

Facebook has announced that it will be implementing a new review process that will determine which pages and groups should feature ads alongside their content.

It comes following the much publicised #FBrape Campaign earlier this month, which saw many brands whose ads appeared next to groups, pages or images that condone or encourage domestic abuse and rape, pull their advertising from Facebook.

At the time, Facebook promised to update its policies, and beginning Monday 1 July, will follow through with a new set of review processes.

The updated system will see the scope of pages and groups that should be ad-restricted expanded, and Facebook will then begin the removal of ads from all pages and groups that fall into this restricted list.

Facebook said in a press statement: “For example, we will now seek to restrict ads from appearing next to pages and groups that contain any violent, graphic or sexual content (content that does not violate our community standards).

“Prior to this change, a page selling adult products was eligible to have ads appear on its right-hand side; now there will not be ads displayed next to this type of content.”

The review process will be manual at first, but will become automated to quickly prevent and/or remove ads appearing next to controversial content in the future.

Facebook added: “We know that marketers work hard to promote their brands, and we take their objectives seriously.”

“Like any digital platform, we’re not going to be perfect but we will be much better. We’ll continue to work aggressively on this issue with advertisers. We are confident the immediate steps we’re taking will result in a significantly improved approach to preventing these instances from occurring, and we are committed to making this process work for everyone who uses Facebook.”

The #FBrape campaign was orchestrated by Women, Action and the Media, the Everyday Sexism Project and activist Soraya Chemaly, and backed by over 100 organisations. On Twitter, it received over 50,000 tweets under the hashtag #FBrape while over 15 major brands, including Nissan and Nationwide, to suspend their Facebook marketing campaigns.

Today, BSkyB and M&S also pulled advertising over "inappropriate" content.

Jennifer Faull

Jen Faull is Brands Editor at The Drum. Based in London, she has interviewed major business figures including top marketers from Mondelez, Unilever, Tesco, and Lidl.

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