A new report from ProPublica and the New York Times found that dozens of large corporations — including Verizon, Amazon, Target, Goldman Sachs, and Facebook itself — were using Facebook’s targeted ads to only show job opportunities to younger people.
Verizon, according to the report, was looking to hire people in financial planning and analysis. So it took out an ad on Facebook — and targeted people between the ages of 25 and 36 years old.
Sorry, Baby Boomers and Gen X, looks like you’re out of luck. Good thing there’s a safety net out there that Paul Ryan would never dream of cutting … oh, I see.
As ProPublica notes, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 prohibits bias against people 40 or older when hiring. There’s already been a class-action lawsuit filed in San Francisco against Facebook over the targeted ads.
Facebook acknowledged ProPublica had uncovered flaws in their ad system before — like the one that let advertisers target “Jew haters” — but defended itself over the age issue.
Sorry, Baby Boomers and Gen X, looks like you’re out of luck.
“We know we have more work to do — as previous investigations by ProPublica have shown,” wrote Rob Goldman, Facebook’s vice president of ads. “And we’re investing heavily in more people and better technology so that we constantly improve over time.”
“But in this case we disagree with ProPublica. Used responsibly, age-based targeting for employment purposes is an accepted industry practice and for good reason: it helps employers recruit and people of all ages find work.”
A quick reminder: When Mark Zuckerberg was 22, he stressed that “young people are just smarter,” and implied that people under 30 make better employees.
Yep, nothing to worry about here. Just major corporations shunning potential employees with kids, health problems, and all the other troublesome things that stop you from working long hours for very little money.
Here’s a fun quote from a 58-year-old social media marketing strategist who talked to ProPublica about looking for work.
“Once you reach your 50s, you may as well be dead,” he said. “I’ve gone into interviews, with my head of gray hair and my receding hairline, and they know I’m dead.”
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