A joint investigation by ProPublica and the New York Times has found that major companies including Verizon, Amazon, Goldman Sachs, Target, and Facebook itself are using Facebook’s ad-targeting tools to block job ads appearing for older workers. And it’s not just on Facebook that the companies are apparently trying to exclude older job seekers. ProPublica was able to buy employments adds on Google and LinkedIn that excluded audiences older than 40–and the ads were approved almost immediately. Employment law experts voiced their opinions to ProPublica that the practice likely violates the Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 as that law prohibits bias against job seekers over 40. For Facebook’s part, Rob Goldman, a Facebook vice president, told 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.”MG
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