Facebook, in its pursuit to enhance each individual users experience on the social platform, is updating ad controls, and is currently testing people response. The goal is to help people avoid exposure to ads that focus on certain topics that they might find distressing.
For testing purposes, ads pertaining to alcohol, and ads related to parenting, will be able to be blocked. Mark Rabkin, the Vice-President of the Core Ads Dept at Facebook states, “Those are the two most common topics. For families who experience the loss of a child, to continue to see ads about parenting and new baby stuff, that can be really upsetting.”
Facebook reports that other topics might be added in the future, depending on whether other topics are reported by users as potentially distressing. In the past, users have been able to identify topics that they are interested in, making this the first time that a user can be actively block a specific topic.
In addition to this change, Facebook is updating how its preferences page is displayed, attempting to simplify its navigation. Mark Rabkin states, “People told us that the main thing they want is for ad preferences to be easier to find and use.”
Rabkin added, “We’re not changing any existing settings here,” Mr. Rabkin said. “We’re just changing how it appears.” The new look makes it easier to navigate the preferences because it standardizes the layout of the preference options, regardless of where you access them.