Facebook shows funeral home advertisements to cancer patient

Facebook slammed  by critics for showing funeral home advertisements to a cancer patient who had just googled to know more about CANCER

Facebook was at the butt of criticisms on social media networks again for showing an preposterous ad to a Cancer patient.

Austria based 47  year old Daniel Kapp was diagnosed with prostate cancer last month. Daniel used Google to know more about the illness.

The next morning when he opened his Facebook account, he was shell shocked to notice that he was being shown ads of funeral directors. Daniel says he was ‘bombarded’ with ‘insensitive’ promotions that he couldn’t remove. Unfortunately for Daniel he couldnt even delete them.

“I was just knocked off my feet to see that there on the screen,” said Daniel, who works as a strategic consultant in Austria. “It is just completely insensitive. And every time I tried to delete it, it appeared again.”

He blamed Facebook for monitoring the data about the searches he had done and then using it in order to sell it on to potential advertisers.

Even the funeral companies whose ads were shown to Daniel were unaware of the same. When contacted by Austrian local media, the directors of the funeral companies said they were shocked their adverts were being used to target people in this way. One said: ‘I can confirm that this should never have happened.’

Facebook targets users with advertisement and for that it gathers information about devices, sites people visit, searches they’ve made and demographic data they have entered into their account on the social network. As per European Union sponsored report, Facebook even tracks those users who have not registered for FB and those who have logged off. Initially these cookies were just used on the site, but in September Facebook launched its Atlas ad platform that monitors these movements around the wider web.

In March, Facebook added a new tool called Topic Data that now additionally scans what people are ‘saying about events, brands, subjects and activities.’

This is not the first time Facebook has done something inhumane. Back in December, Facebook showed  a notification titled “It’s been a great year! Thanks for being a part of it” with his daughters image to web designer and writer Eric Meyer. Meyer was grieving his daughter death.  Facebook forced Meyer to relive the utter horror of losing his baby, who had died on 6th birthday in June, 2014 after suffering from brain tumour.  Meyer who is barely out of the grief of his immense personal loss was flabbergasted to see the photo and the very inhumane tagline. He summed it up aptly on his blog.

At that time, Facebook had apologized to Meyer for the insensitive post. It remains to be seen whether the social media giant reaches out to Daniel.