You probably know that Facebook has learned quite a bit about you. However, you may be surprised how much the social media platform knows about all of its users.
For instance, Facebook knows how you are likely to vote this presidential election. From The New York Times, here is something interesting you can do, to see how Facebook categorizes your politics and interests:
1. Log in and goÂ to your page.
2. Go to https://www.facebook.com/ads/preferences from a WebÂ browser. This is where Facebook collects information about you and learns your advertising preferences.
3. Under “Interests,” click â€śLifestyle and Culture.â€ť
4. Look for â€śU.S. Politics.” Here is where you will see how Facebook categorizes you politically (i.e. â€śliberalâ€ť or â€śconservativeâ€ť).
According to the NYT article, Facebook learns about you through the pages you “like” and also by your posts.
Although the data-mining of our preferences may seem somewhat unsettling and perhaps to some, invasive, Facebook recently announced new tools for giving its users more control over the ads they see:
“What weâ€™ve heard is that people donâ€™t like to see ads that are irrelevant to them or that disrupt or break their experience. People also want to have control over the kinds of ads they see.”
If there are certain ads you donâ€™t want to see, from the Ad Preferences page referenced above, you can click â€śXâ€ť to remove that category of ads. For example, if you werenâ€™t interested in ads about automobiles, you could look for the â€śAutomobilesâ€ť category under â€śInterestsâ€ť and remove that topic:(Image: File)
You can also use the same tool to stop seeing ads from certain companies or organizations.
According to the social media titan, Ad PreferencesÂ gives users more control over ads than using third-party, ad-blocking software:
“Rather than paying ad blocking companies to unblock the ads we showâ€”as some of these companies have invited us to do in the pastâ€”weâ€™re putting control in peopleâ€™s hands with our updated ad preferences and our other advertising controls.”