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When you have a really hot post, you often get this viral multiplier.

So when you buy this one ad impression, you can get an extra 20- to 40-times multiplier because those people comment and share it.” Momentum is building in Congress and elsewhere in the federal government for a law requiring Facebook and other Web companies to reveal publicly who bought political ads and the amount that was spent on their platforms.

6 statement by Alex Stamos, the company’s chief security officer, who noted that the vast majority of the ads run by the 470 pages and accounts did not specifically reference the U. presidential election, voting or any particular candidate. Much like the online ads discovered by Facebook, messages spread by Soviet-era operatives were meant to look as though they were written by bona fide political activists in the United States, disguising the involvement of an adversarial foreign power.

“Rather, the ads and accounts appeared to focus on amplifying divisive social and political messages across the ideological spectrum — touching on topics from LGBT matters to race issues to immigration to gun rights,” ­Stamos said at the time. Russian information operations didn’t end with the collapse of the Soviet Union.

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Ads on Facebook have directly appeared in people’s news feeds since 2012.

And Facebook has said that one-quarter of the ads bought by the Russian operatives identified so far targeted a particular geographic area. ] While Facebook has played down the impact of the Russian ads on the election, Dennis Yu, chief technology officer for Blitz Metrics, a digital marketing company that focuses on Facebook ads, said that 0,000 worth of Facebook ads could have been viewed hundreds of millions of times.

[Did Facebook ads traced to a Russian company violate U. According to Yu, “0,000 worth of very concentrated posts is very, very powerful.

Roughly a third of the world’s population now logs in monthly.

As Facebook’s user base rapidly expanded, the company wrote the playbook for digital targeting in the smartphone era — and for the type of microtargeting that has become critical to modern political campaigns.