Facebook has taken an unusual step to honour the death of Thailand’s King Bhumibol Adulyadej by pausing all ads on its network in the country.
Advertisers noticed that Facebook had halted the ability to deliver ads on Friday, October 14. King Bhumibol Adulyadej died at the age of 88 on October 13.
“Out of respect for the passing of Thailand’s King Bhumibol Adulyadej, we’re temporarily not showing ads in Thailand,” Facebook says on its FAQ website for advertisers. “We apologise for any inconvenience and appreciate your support of the Thai community during this period of mourning.”
This is the first time Facebook has halted ads in an entire country.
Never seen a prompt like this this before. #Facebook temporarily pausing ads from displaying in Thailand to respect mourning of their King. pic.twitter.com/r7KCaxWtsf
— Nancy Casanova (@nancycasanova) October 14, 2016
The death of Adulyadej, who was Thailand’s reigning monarch since 1946, has caused the country to go into a year-long period of mourning.
Local news outlets and other tech companies like Google and Apple have shown respect by turning their websites monochrome. YouTube has reportedly halted ads in the country as well. Some magazines will print ads with white ribbons on them to symbolise mourning, according to AdAge.
Facebook opened an office in Thailand in September 2015. At the time, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg said that 34 million people used the social network in Thailand and posted three times more than the company’s global average.
We’ve asked Facebook how long it plans to suspend ads in Thailand and will update this story if we hear back.
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