Misleading advertisements, with false claims and even with miracle treatments: these are the contents captured by MIT Technology Review that circulate in advertising format on Facebook and Instagram. Specifically, the media has documented cases of Ads linked to alleged cancer treatmentswhich would be shown to users who suffer from the disease.
“Meta is plagued by advertisements containing sensational health claims, from which the company benefits directly“, reads the article. Several of the announcements taken up by the publication are from the International Hospital Center of the Pacific, CHIPSA for its acronym, which was founded as a hospital that provides cancer treatments.
After MIT Technology Review contacted Meta about five ads from CHIPSA and three from another clinic called Verita Life, several of the ads were taken down.
“Bombarded with alternative things all the time”
A cancer patient told the outlet that “cancer patients and survivors are bombarded with all this kind of alternative stuff all the time“. One of the “alternative treatments“most used for these cases are those based on vitamin C, one that was seen by MIT Technology Review in banner ad format and that is similar to one that we have previously documented.
About the cases documented by MIT Technology ReviewMeta commented: “We rejected several of the ads for violating our misleading claims policy that prohibits claims of cures for incurable diseases.“.
Although most ad and post checks go through automated systems, Meta says there is a chance that some posts that violate community guidelines and ad policies will be published, which is why it’s so important that users do initiate processes to request data verification processes to be carried out before advertisements or posts with doubtful information. If this happens, Meta has several routes to initiate processes in order to verify the information that swarms in the form of publications or advertisements and, if necessary, resorts to tagging the publications or unsubscribing the advertisements as it happened in this case.
According to MIT Technology Review, CHIPSA has spent around $5,000 since mid-2018 on advertising on Meta
Last November, Meta said that, in collaboration with Cofepris, more than 11,000 posts on Facebook and Instagram about the sale and advertising of medicines and other unregulated products were removed.
Image | Wikimedia Commons