Facebook asks New York University to close its political ad targeting research project

New York University specifically designed browser extensions to collect political advertising data displayed on FacebookNew York University specifically designed browser extensions to collect data on political advertisements displayed by Facebook

   Facebook asked a research project of New York University to stop collecting platform data on its political advertisement positioning. They worked with these scholars There was an argument.

  The argument involves the New York University Advertising Observation Project, a project initiated by the New York University School of Engineering last month. The project recruited more than 6,500 volunteers and used specially designed browser extensions to collect data on political ads displayed by Facebook.

   In a letter sent to the New York University Advertising Observation Project on October 16, Facebook stated that the project violated its terms of service prohibiting “massive collection of data from its website.”

   Facebook Privacy Policy Officer Alison Hendricks wrote in the letter: “No matter what the intention is, crawlers are not allowed to collect information from us.” She wrote that if the school Without terminating the project and deleting the collected data, we may take mandatory measures.

   At the time of the conflict between Facebook and New York University, on the eve of the US election, political advertisements on social media received more and more attention. Facebook has stated in recent weeks that it will ban new political advertisements before election day and suspend all political advertisements indefinitely on election day to prevent the spread of paid false information about election results.

   After the opacity of political advertisements for the 2016 presidential campaign caused public outrage, Facebook added the platform’s advertising archive function, which includes information such as the paying users of the advertisements, the delivery time, and the geographic location of viewers. The library does not include target user information targeted by ads.

   Researchers from the New York University Advertising Observation Project say they hope to provide journalists, researchers, governments, and others with the ability to search for political ads by state and campaign information, and figure out which information is targeted to specific audiences , Where is the source of funding for advertising.

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