The rise of the misleading Facebook ads

22 June 2011

It's like something out the 1980s, when snake oil peddlers convinced your mum that guar gum could shift her fat arse and still let her fist cream cakes into her mouth - it's the world of Facebook adverts and their increasingly unbelievable claims. A case in point - this advert for wrinkle therapy submitted by avid Bitterwallet reader Emma:

Bitterwallet - Facebook adverts

Really? First, it's unlikely that Madonna agreed to the advertisement - something Facebook should have picked up on when they cleared the advert and associated images. Second, the world is generally in agreement that studio photographs of celebrities may enjoy the beautification effects of Photoshop. The transformation of Madonna is more likely the effect of make-up and messing about with the smudge tool.

How easy is it to find a questionable Facebook ad? Very. I opened up my homepage thinking it would take a while, but it took just one click; after I clicked onto a page recommended by Facebook, I found this ad:

Picture 2Click on the ad and you reach the home page for Go to the page footer and you'll find the website is operated by YourFinance Ltd. Who? According to Companies house, this business traded for just over 18 months and was struck off and dissolved in 2009. The company number doesn't match that of YourFinance Ltd - or any other company.

Facebook used to be very strict about clearing adverts - it wasn't unusual for their commercial team to kick back individual campaigns several times. Now it appear they don't care how misleading they are. Have you found any examples of shady advertising on Facebook? Send your screenshots to [email protected]

TOPICS:   Social Media   Advertising


  • Mack
    Having created numerous Facebook advertising campaigns it certainly has got a lot easier to get adverts approved these days, but from personal experience as a user I have seen a shed load of companies employing completely unrelated images to their adverts so I am not surprised by the shitty mock up of that two faced bitch Madonna.
  • Dick
    I get lots of similar ads about a 2" growth method for free and loopholes in female pyschology so you can have sex with any woman by asking just three questions. That is not on facebook though.
  • shinkyshonky
    I suppose when your losing potential customers per month the shit kicks in
  • Shinkyshonky
    Dick ....thats just dodgy
  • Elf
    It should also be noted that they have done a very bad job of photoshopping that photo, the eye on the left is very blue and the one on the right is hazel!
  • Mark C.
    The pic in that FB ad has been ripped off from a series of 'What Madonna looks like before and after Photoshop' images that appeared online some while back... So unless their 'skin secret' involves only ever being seen in public in the pages of Vogue, I fail to see how it relates to their service.
  • me
    @ Dick I give you the questions: 1 - What is your name? 2- Would you like a ride in my Ferrari? 3 - My place or your place? Simples!
  • James
    I've never seen ads like these on Facebook. But then, I use Adblock. It's great therapy for removing unwanted blemishes from websites...
  • klingelton
    I only need one question to sleep with any woman: 1. did you know your your drink had rohypnol in it?

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