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Facebook launches new initiative to fight against iOS 14 ad tracking protections

New Facebook initiative seeks to undermine Apple's privacy move

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Facebook is continuing its media blitz to try to force Apple to stop its plans to limit ad tracking across Apple platforms, with the launch of a new sub-site talking to small business owners railing against ad tracking protection in iOS 14.

A new blog post on Facebook's business page asks readers to "tell your story." Small business owners are expected to download a toolkit containing frames and social media image tools to help voice their opinion of Apple's ad tracking decision.

The new feature introduced with iOS 14 will go into effect in early 2021 and Apple says developers must implement the change or face expulsion from the App Store. Users will be opted out of ad tracking automatically then prompted with a dialog asking if they'd like to opt in.

Switching to opt-in and placing a dialog in front of users could cause significant adoption of the ad tracking limiting feature. Facebook has aired concerns that this will directly impact its revenue going forward.

An example of a social media post provided by Facebook
An example of a social media post provided by Facebook

Facebook's small business blog suggests that it is up to small business owners to voice their discontent and impact to revenue to social media. The post says to use personal stories and spread the word to their partners in order to fight this together.

The initiative says to directly call out Apple and "speak up for the millions of small businesses affected by Apple's update. This echoes the full-page newspaper ads Facebook took out against Apple.

Facebook tracks users across dozens of metrics on its website, in apps, and across the web. Facebook even partners with retail companies to track its users in the real world, all for the sake of "targeted advertising." Rather than posting a generalized ad aimed at an audience, it seeks to use the mountains of data it has on users to show a very specific ad instead.

Apple wants to stop this level of sophisticated tracking. This kind of invasive business practice is exactly what Apple's privacy campaigns and iOS features are meant to protect users agains.

Facebook says that limiting data collection will limit their targeting abilities, thus it will limit revenue. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has even said that Apple's initiatives will "impair COVID-19 recovery."

Apple's ad tracking protection is expected to launch in early 2021 despite Facebook's protests. Apple has also introduced a new privacy label for the App Store that shows exactly what data an app will ask for. Facebook owned Whatsapp has spoken out against the privacy labels, calling them anticompetitive.