Facebook, one of the largest social and advertising platforms in the world, is increasingly relying on artificial intelligence to monitor the platform. If your small business ads are continuously getting blocked on Facebook, there may be another reason besides errors in your ads.
Bloomberg stated in a report that errors made by AI algorithms looking to remove offensive ads from Facebook’s platform have caused already struggling small businesses to miss out on online sales opportunities.
As helpful as Facebook ads have been for all business in general, there are several drawbacks to the platform that have made it increasingly difficult to find success in some situations. Drawbacks include problems with the company’s content-moderation software, limited options for customer support and lack of transparency about how to fix problems.
Interviewed by Fortune, New York-based businesswoman Ruth Harrigan selling honey in souvenir shops has had to rely heavily on Facebook ads for sales during the coronavirus period. Her business was abruptly stopped due to Facebook blocking her ads account due to policy violations. Harrigan is one of millions of small business advertisers who have come to rely on Facebook Inc. because the coronavirus has shut down many traditional retail channels.
Facebook’s human moderators have been focusing on the US election and Covid-19 misinformation this year, so the company has leaned more on artificial intelligence algorithms to monitor other areas of the platform. That’s left many small businesses caught in Facebook’s automated filters, unable to advertise through the service and frustrated because they don’t know why and can’t reach adequate support to fix the issue.
A Facebook rep interviewed by the Post says, “We know it can be frustrating to experience any type of business disruption, especially at such a critical time of the year. While we offer free support for all businesses, we regularly work to improve our tools and systems, and to make the support we offer easier to use and access. We apologize for any inconvenience recent disruptions may have caused.”
Appealing these often-automated decisions has also become a lot harder. “Due to a temporary reduction in our review capacity as a result of Covid-19, we could not always offer our users the option to appeal,” Facebook wrote in its third-quarter report.
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