A dating web site for Catholics says it has been blocked from advertising on Facebook before Valentine’s Day, the company tells Business Insider.
The site’s owners believe that CatholicSingles.com has been caught up in a larger Facebook restriction on certain dating sites advertising before Feb. 14, which Business Insider first reported in January. There is no indication that Facebook is banning ads of faith, of course.
The policy is intended to reduce the amount of spam ads on Facebook, a Facebook spokesperson told us previously. Only dating sites that have an existing approval from a member of Facebook’s sales staff can currently advertise on the site. No new dating sites will be accepted as ad clients until after Valentine’s Day.
Tricia Delaney-Nevarez, who runs the CatholicSingles Facebook page, believes the block gives an unfair advantage to bigger, more established dating sites like Match.com and eHarmony:
Apparently we didn’t make the “cut” as a vetted advertiser and in addition they put a stop to boosting or promoting any posts on our page as well. I recently tried to “boost” a story about the Pope and it was rejected. I can’t imagine any other dating site that adheres to all the guidelines as much as we do.
The CatholicSingles Facebook page mostly carries page posts of blogs and articles pertaining to the faith. It has operated a Facebook page since 2008. “All our ads and boosts have been approved in the past and payment accepted. When trying to contact Facebook and plead our case, we have been given the same replies as the site listed in your article. The lack of concern by Facebook for their small business partners has been very disappointing,” Delaney-Nevarez says.
David Nevarez, another CatholicSingles staffer, tells Business Insider that concern over the Facebook V-Day block is mounting among other operators of small, niche dating sites:
So far we have had no direct reply from them about any of our concerns. We attended a dating industry conference in Vegas two weeks ago and many of those in attendance were experiencing the same problem.
A spokesperson for Facebook indicated the company was looking into the problem but did not comment for the record. Previously, the company has offered this explanation:
We recently updated our policy to require human review for ads for online dating services. We got a lot of negative feedback from people about many of these ads, and in some cases they violated various policies. To keep the quality of ads on Facebook high, we are not currently accepting new online dating advertisers.
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