Facebook is about to temporarily ban advertisements for medical face masks in order to stop people who want to benefit from the coronavirus concerns using the platform from exploiting this situation.
The ban will cover ads on such social media platforms as Facebook and Instagram as well as commercial listings on Facebook Marketplace. According to the company’s blog post, the ban will be enforced in a few days.
Rob Leathern, Facebook’s product director, said on Twitter:
The company also stated in a recent blog post: “We already prohibit people from making health or medical claims related to the coronavirus in product listings on commerce surfaces, including those listings that guarantee a product will prevent someone from contracting it.”
Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri also tweeted regarding the new policies: “Supplies are short, prices are up, and we’re against people exploiting this public health emergency.”
The Facebook decision follows the comments of the World Health Organization on people buying face masks. Amid the coronavirus outbreak, many people began buying up protective gear like medical masks that eventually led to their shortage. Such masks are not really effective for average people, but they are crucial for medical workers who care for sick people. If there is not enough of the needed equipment, the lives of medical professionals will be put at risk.