Reddit continues to make controversial decisions, this time eliminating the ability to opt out of personalized advertising.
Reddit announced a series of changes, including how ad personalization works. Essentially, the company says very little personal information is used, but users will no longer be able to prevent ad personalization based on how they use the platform:
Removing the ability to opt-out of ad personalization based on your Reddit activity, except in select countries.
Reddit requires very little personal information, and we like it that way. Our advertisers instead rely on on-platform activity—what communities you join, leave, upvotes, downvotes, and other signals—to get an idea of what you might be interested in.
The vast majority of redditors will see no change to their ads on Reddit. For users who previously opted out of personalization based on Reddit activity, this change will not result in seeing more ads or sharing on-platform activity with advertisers. It does enable our models to better predict which ad may be most relevant to you.
One welcome change is giving users more ability to opt out of certain types of ads:
Adding the ability to opt-out of specific ad categories
We are adding the ability to see fewer ads from specific categories—Alcohol, Dating, Gambling, Pregnancy & Parenting, and Weight Loss—which will live in the Safety & Privacy section of your User Settings. “Fewer” because we’re utilizing a combination of manual tagging and machine learning to classify the ads, which won’t be 100% successful to start. But, we expect our accuracy to improve over time.
Predictably, the change to ad personalization is not going over well with users.