According to a new report from the Center for Intimacy Justice, Facebook rejected ads from 60 companies focused on women’s sexual health, citing policies on “adult products and services” as the reason for not allowing them to run.
The report said that of the 60 health businesses studied that serve women’s health and health for people of diverse genders, “all (100%) had experienced Facebook rejecting an advertisement at some point.” More troubling, the report found that Facebook suspended half (50%) of survey respondents’ advertising accounts.
All but one of the 60 businesses were founded and led by women, with one being led by a non-binary person, said the report.
The report also showed ads focused on men that were approved by Facebook, including one for erection supplements with the tagline “Get hard. Stay hard.”
The types of ads that were rejected were related to menopause, pelvic pain, pregnancy or postpartum care, menstrual health, fertility, sexual wellness, education, and others, with Facebook classifying the advertisements as “adult products”.
“Right now, it’s arbitrary where they’ll say a product is or isn’t allowed in a way that we think has really sexist undertones and a lack of understanding about health,” said Jackie Rotman, the nonprofit organization’s founder in an interview with the New York Times.
Facebook parent company responded with a statement saying: “We welcome ads for sexual wellness products but we prohibit nudity and have specific rules about how these products can be marketed on our platform. We have provided detail to advertisers about what kinds of products and descriptions we allow in ads.”
You can access the full report here.