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Wolfie Christl @WolfieChristl
, 14 tweets, 6 min read Read on Twitter
1/ So, Facebook *itself* will stop sorting+classifying users also based on extensive info from third-party data brokers such as Acxiom, Oracle, Experian and Epsilon. Great, because it shows that they cannot do whatever they want anymore. But.

2/ Businesses will still be able to use extensive info about our behaviors off Facebook from third-party data brokers and myriads of other sources to target people in FB. But they have to do the sorting+classifying by themselves and then upload the results via "Custom Audiences'.
3/ So, this is a quite smart move. They can tell the public things like 'we cut off data brokers', but in fact they are just trying to shift the responsibility for linking third-party data to FB user profile data more to the third-parties.
4/ Like "whatever customer and real-time behavioral data other businesses upload via Custom Audiences, we're just a neutral platform, we're not responsible for which (personal) data they aggregate, collate and upload to Facebook".

We shouldn't let them get away with this.
5/ And of course they won't 'cut ties' with data brokers. They 'will still work with third-party brokers for measurement purposes, including measuring offline behavior as Facebook does through a partnership with Oracle’s Datalogix', e.g. to track purchases…
6/ Taken together, as @roofjoke summarized it ():

Businesses will have to purchase extra data about income, net worth, purchases, vehicles owned, banking and insurance policies, number+age of children etc by themselves, before they can use it on Facebook.
7/ And btw. this is *really* interesting. It is widely known that FB uses extra data from data brokers for profiling+targeting, BUT. Which kinds of data does FB provide to data brokers? Does 'anonymized' mean aggregated? Or individual-level/pseudonymized?…
8/ What reasons, other than current public debate, could have affected Facebook's decision to shut down "partner categories"?

a) Is the third-party data provided to Facebook by data brokers perhaps not as 'clean' and 'permissioned' as these companies claim it to be?

b) Doesn't seem that the GDPR is the main reason ('over the next six months'). However, we've seen & will further see efforts to shift liabilities because of the GDPR. This is not necessarily bad, because it formalizes accountability, but absolutely needs further scrutiny.
10/ The real issue is 'Custom Audiences' which lets businesses systematically link customer data with FB data. Google & others provide similar mechanisms. It's kind of "list broking on steroids" + often used illegally in the EU. I wrote about it here, p47:…
11/ 'Partner Categories' is "just reselling Experian or Acxiom ... something those companies could always enable on their end ... I suspect this is a combination of those segments not getting much adoption, plus scoring some easy privacy brownie points"
12/ I wouldn't say it would be 'the end of the world', but yeah:

"So long as Custom Audiences is still there, the magic will still happen. If that closes, yes, it's kind of the end of the world"
13/ TechCrunch's @JoshConstine asking the same question (like I did above):
14/ Perhaps the removal of 3rd-party 'partner categories' is a bit more related to the GDPR/DSGVO than I thought. According to the German FB marketer @thomashutter they sent a timetable to advertisers that points to May 25 (screenshot is Google Translate):…
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