How to find out how Facebook decides what to advertise to you

Bethan McKernan@mck_beth
Friday 04 December 2015 13:30
Science and Tech

If you've ever been weirded out by how you can be messaging a friend about going on holiday one moment and Facebook will advertise plane tickets to Spain the next - or discomfited by Facebook ads in general - then read on.

It probably won't surprise you to learn that Facebook keeps tabs on your activity to find out what you're interested in and likely to spend money on.

But do you know how to find out what Facebook thinks you like?

It's actually pretty simple. From your feed, click through in this order:

  • Settings

  • Ads

  • Edit

  • See preferences

Or you can just click here.

You'll then get a list that looks a bit like this:

And under these headings there are some pretty... shall we say... niche subcategories.

Facebook says these appear based on what pages you've liked and ads you've clicked on in the past.

Just a few of the weirder things people at i100 and The Independent apparently like include:

  • the Bible

  • Bacon

  • Broth

  • Soot

  • Iconoclasm

  • Blood (food and drink section)

  • Julius Caesar

  • Alligators

And one staffer should probably take a long hard look at their diet:

You can manually delete each ad preference if those pesky iconoclasm adverts are getting on your nerves (or your list is giving you an existential crisis).

Now we know. And knowing is half the battle.

HT BuzzFeed News

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