The news: Facebook’s ad targeting may be producing inaccurate results. A new study from North Carolina State University found that Facebook’s user profiling system, which tracks behavior to determine users’ interests and serve targeted ads, resulted in irrelevant or incorrect interests around 29% of the time.
More on this: North Carolina State University’s study used a small sample—only 146 test accounts—but its results cast further doubt on the effectiveness of Facebook and Meta’s already fraught ad delivery systems.
Meta’s response: Sensing anxiety from brand partners, Meta has taken steps to restore faith in its advertising ability, such as enabling brands to choose where their ads are placed. But a recent story from The Washington Post shows Meta is also trying to draw negative attention to competitors to diminish from its own.
Looking forward: Meta may have succeeded in drawing negative attention to TikTok, but there’s no worming its way out of long-standing issues. With its smear campaign out in the open and yet another issue with its advertising products, Meta will have to find a long-term solution to appease advertisers.