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Researchers found that Facebook has apparently allowed advertisers to earn money by targeting children who are interested in gambling, smoking and other inappropriate things

The multinational tech giant  Facebook has yet again involved itself in another controversy. Even though it's one of the most used apps in the world, it still is on the news for one thing, and that not for good things but mostly controversies. Reset Australia group has found that children below the age of 18 years and as young as 13, have started to become a target by business owners for their advertising.

Children at this age are usually interested in different things and want to know the answers to everything, but not every question is to be answered to them at such tender ages. With every source of information now being available online, it is up to these large social media platforms to come up with ways to prevent such young audiences from getting exposed to the things they are still too young for. The group found that children who have been observed to take interest in gambling, smoking and weight loss have become an easy way for these advertisers to earn money from by targeting them for their ads. In order to prove this, the group created a page on Facebook and also an advertising account named ‘Ozzie news network’ to see which type of ads the tech giant will provide to this page through its ‘Ads Manager’ platform and even if Facebook does not allow ads related to alcohol to people who are below the age of 18, the social media app has no system as to stop these advertisers from targeting young people who show interest in alcohol.

The Australian group found out that Facebook has allowed the page to put up ads to about 740,000 children who are aged between the years of 13 and 17, they also found out that pages who allow to put up inappropriate ads were able to put up ads mainly of alcohol, vaping, gambling, weight loss, fast foods, smoking and dating services. Apparently it will only cost $3.03 to reach 52,000 teenagers for alcohol ads and around $11.24 to reach the 14,000 teenagers in Australia who have shown interest in gambling.

The report after its release has caused Facebook to receive a huge amount of backlash and rightfully so, the social media platform should be a safe place for children to discover things that suit their own age group.

The Australian group has asked the law makers to come up with strict measures that can ensure the kids protection against such topics and have a system that can regulate over the kids data and their media to which they get access to. Along with this they have also asked for parental consent to be there as well with this.


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