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Facebook Denies Extortion Claims

By AdFeatures  |  Posted: November 20, 2012

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Facebook have denied allegations that they attempted to impose a spending limit on gambling companies who operate fan pages and advertisements on the social networking website.

The claims arose when a string of email correspondence were leaked on the Casino Affiliate Programs website, showing a representative of Facebook informing the owner of the Mad About Bingo website that in order for them to reinstate the fan page they would have to pay thousands of pounds. According to the emails, the fan page had been suddenly removed without the owner’s knowledge in order to protect users. However, the Facebook representative stated that there is dedicated support available for “gambling clients with permanent spends over 10 000USD per month.” They also stated that in order for advertisements for gambling related products to be approved, the company must meet a “minimum monthly spend of £30,000.”

In explaining why these spending requirements had been introduced, the representative said: “Gambling sites and advertisements of related products/services for our self service advertisers is prohibited on Facebook. In order to guarantee [the] high quality of ads and the site we have this rule in place.’ However, although certain restrictions for gambling advertisements are outlined in the official ad guidelines and Terms & Conditions of the website, there appears to be no mention of a spending requirement.

In a statement issued to CalvinAyre.com, Linda Griffin, a Facebook spokesperson stated that any gambling companies must gain pre-approval before promoting their services. “If an advertiser violates this, we notify them and as part of the vetting process to ensure quality advertisers we recommend a minimum spend which we have found deters bad actors and helps us protect our users,” she said.

Facebook have been seeking to enter the real money gambling market for some time, with Gamesys launching a real money bingo game on the site and a partnership with 888 Holdings being confirmed earlier this year. With the drop of Facebook stock prices, it is hoped that this venture into real money social gaming will provide a boost to revenue. It appears that the controversial spending limits on gambling companies may be an attempt to acquire funds until the monetary benefits of these partnerships are felt.

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