Unit-targeted ads are extremely controversial among a large proportion of users. In discussions about them, the issue of privacy disappearance in the Internet age and eavesdropping on consumers by advertisers and technology companies are usually raised. So what do you say about these types of spots appearing between messenger messages?
An open patent filed by Facebook confirms that the company is considering the option of placing ads for private conversations in its messenger. In the application we can see the following graphics:
They show examples of messages between which an advertisement is placed. Let’s follow it all. Bob informs Alice that he is currently in the Grand Canyon in the USA. The algorithm detects the keyword – in this case it is “Grand Canyon” – and automatically displays an ad about this place. For many people this type of novelty may seem even ridiculous.
The patent also indicates ways of matching ads. These are to be selected based on the said keywords and location. At this point, however, it’s hard not to think about eavesdropping on conversations, especially at a time when customers’ trust in corporations hangs in the balance. Added to this is the fact that ads are displayed in private conversations – seriously Facebook?
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A company spokesman commented on the controversy: “We often apply for patents on technology that we never implement. Applications should not be considered as an indicator of our future plans. We don’t plan to place ads in conversations between users. “
These words are somewhat reassuring, but it should be remembered that just a few months ago Mark Zuckerberg stated that he plans to change the way of displaying targeted ads and transfer them also to private messages. Facebook’s plans are therefore quite vague and cannot be completely predicted or deciphered.