Facebook in fresh video metrics row

19 Octobre, 2018, 18:40 | Auteur: Auguste Feret

"The persistence of Facebook's false metrics was possible only because Facebook did not take verification of its metrics seriously, severely understaffed the engineering team in charge of fixing errors, did not fully investigate or correct errors that were reported to it, and refused to allow third-party verification of its metrics".

A legal-filing brought against the social network by a group of small advertisers contends that Facebook knowingly falsified its average viewership statistics for over a year as a means of duping advertisers into signing up for video ads in the false belief that more members were viewing them than was actually the case.

According to a newly public filing in an ongoing lawsuit, a group of advertisers now says that Facebook has been willfully withholding information about how much time its users spend watching paid ads-if more people spend more time watching ads, then those ads can command higher rates.

"Facebook's internal efforts behind the scenes reflect a company mentality of reckless indifference toward the accuracy of its metrics", reads an amended complaint filed in California federal court Tuesday as part of a 2016 suit brought by plaintiffs including a Las Vegas ad agency and a Pennsylvania man who bought ad space on Facebook. "We told our customers about the error when we discovered it-and updated our help center to explain the issue", a spokeswoman said.

"The lawsuit is without merit and we've filed a motion to dismiss these claims of fraud", a Facebook spokesperson said in a statement. The report set off a stream of other metric miscalculations reported by Facebook and changes to how metrics were handled at the social-media company.

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They add that the average "duration of video viewed" and "percentage of video viewed" metrics were "typically inflated by between 150% and 900%". Facebook also set up a measurement council and began working with the Media Ratings Council to complete an audit of its metrics.

Discounting the shorter views - including people who had ignored a video in their news feed - inflated the average viewing times for each video. The company long had a policy to not count video views that lasted less than 3 seconds.

Facebook is accused of trying to hide inflated advertising metrics.

In 2016, Facebook admitted to an error in miscalculating video metrics, which of course had major consequences for advertisers.

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