Google Ends Demographic and Geographic Targeting for Real Estate Ads

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Google announcement it is tightening its policies, prohibiting employment, housing and credit advertisers from targeting or excluding ads based on certain demographics and zip codes.

The company explained that it has long prohibited advertisers from targeting users on the basis of “sensitive categories” related to their identity, beliefs, sexuality or personal difficulties. This means that the company does not allow targeting based on categories such as race, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, national origin or disability.

But now Google is adding several new categories to this list to improve access to housing, employment, and credit opportunities.

The new policy will prohibit affected advertisers from targeting or excluding ads based on gender, age, parental status, marital status or postal code. The company expects these changes to take effect by the end of 2020.

“As the changing circumstances of the coronavirus pandemic and business continuity issues for many advertisers make precise timelines difficult, we plan to roll out this update to the United States and Canada as soon as possible and, in all Eventually, by the end of this year, “Google said.” We will be providing advertisers with more information on how these changes may affect them in the coming weeks. “

Google has worked closely with the US Department of Housing and Urban Development to make these changes to its policy, and said it would provide advertisers with additional fair housing information throughout this transition to “help ensure they act in a way that promotes fairness. access to housing opportunities “.

Google isn’t the first company to change its rules for real estate listings. Last year, Facebook made massive changes to his advertising platform after being accused by HUD of allowing housing discrimination.

The changes came after years of careful scrutiny of Facebook advertising practices, which appeared to allow advertisers to deliberately exclude certain people from housing, employment or loan listings.

Google said it plans to continue working with the HUD, civil rights and housing experts, and the advertising industry at large to address concerns about discrimination in targeting advertising.

“Google is committed to working with the wider advertising ecosystem to help set high standards for online advertising, and we will continue to strive to define policies that improve inclusion and access for users. “the company said.

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