This Jan. 30, 2014 file photo taken in Washington, D.C., shows the splash page for the social media internet site Facebook. AFP PHOTO / Karen BLEIER
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Facebook Inc. said Friday it would no longer allow certain advertisers to exclude racial or ethnic groups when placing ads on its service, following criticism that the practice was discriminatory.Facebook will disable use of the advertising tool, called 'ethnic affinities,' for ads that offer housing, employment and the extension of credit; areas where certain groups have historically faced discrimination, Facebook said in a blog post.Facebook collects vast amounts of data on its users, including photographs, allowing it to demographically categorize them in ways that allow advertisers to precisely target content to those they want to reach.A group of Facebook users filed a lawsuit against the company after the ProPublica report, claiming such ad targeting violated the Fair Housing Act and Civil Rights Act.
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