Meta announced changes to their advertisement policy targeting teens. From February 2023, advertisers will be unable to target kids on Facebook and Instagram based on gender.
However, they can still use age and location. Additionally, from March 2023, teens on these platforms will have more control over what ads they see by going to the Ad Preferences option available within Settings. However, people can’t turn off ads about certain products and services.
“We recognize that teens aren’t necessarily as equipped as adults to make decisions about how their online data is used for advertising, particularly when it comes to showing them products available to purchase. For that reason, we’re further restricting the options advertisers have to reach teens, as well as the information we use to show ads to teens,” Meta announced.
The parent company of Facebook, Instagram and Whatsapp said that the changes result from research, direct feedback from the parents and child development experts, UN children’s rights principles, and various global regulations.
This new limit is the latest in the series of restrictions by Meta. Ads on restricted topics like alcohol, financial products and weight loss products are already restricted to teens on Facebook and Instagram. Additionally, the company added a new privacy page on social media platforms to inform teens about new tools and privacy settings. For more information and support, teens can also visit the teen privacy centre.
In 2021, Meta limited ads targeting people under 18 based on their age, gender and location and not based on interests or activity, which the company collects from all over the web. The company also made the new Instagram accounts of users under 16 private by default.
Social media platforms collect tons of data, and how they use data has always been a contentious topic Steps like this are always welcome, especially when one considers how vulnerable young minds can be on the internet.