Facebook now allows ads for some face masks

Now the ban will only apply to medical-grade masks, or ads that make dubious claims about certain masks offering protection from the virus to profit from the pandemic.

“We’re scaling back this temporary ban to allow people to promote and trade non-medical masks, including those that are homemade or handmade, in organic posts, ads and commerce listings on Facebook and Instagram,” Rob Leathern, the director of product management at Facebook who is responsible for the advertisements team, said in a blog post.

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In March Facebook (FB) banned all advertisements and commerce listings for masks of any kind, building on its other rules against ads or listings for products related to coronavirus.
But ads for masks — with and without medical claims — continued to pop up all over the platform, including from big-name brands, up until the ban was lifted on Wednesday.

“We’ve been training our automated systems to distinguish medical masks from non-medical masks and get better at detecting violating content with false urgency and health claims. While our enforcement won’t ever be perfect, it will get better with time,” Leathern said in a statement.

Despite initial conflicting directives from governments and health authorities around the world, many cities, states and countries now require face coverings to be worn on public transport or when out in public.

Those wishing to advertise masks will need to be in good standing with a minimum advertising history on the platform of four months, Leathern said.

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