With Facebook shutting down its offices, and asking staff to work from home amid the COVID-19 outbreak, that's meant that many contract workers who are not able to work out of the office are simply not working, which has reduced Facebook's capacity in several areas.
Facebook uses contractors for content moderation, and the company warned earlier in the week that this could lead to some delays and errors as it increases its reliance on automated systems to detect and remove rule violating posts.
But Facebook's contractors also conduct ad reviews, which, Facebook says, also means that there may be some delays in ad approvals, and incorrectly rejected ads due to the machines stepping in.
As per Facebook:
"We use a combination of people and technology to review ads on Facebook and Instagram, and our automated systems already play a big role in that process. Now with a reduced and remote workforce, we’re relying on automated technology even more."
Facebook says that this could mean:
- Delayed review for ads and commerce listings
- An increase in ads being incorrectly disapproved
- Delayed or reduced appeals
- More limited availability of Facebook in-stream ads and lower delivery
That's not ideal, especially as advertisers look to alternate ways to reach potential customers and keep their revenues flowing amid the lockdowns.
If you want to limit any potential impacts to your Facebook ads, Facebook Trust and Integrity Team Leader Rob Leathern advises that brands could look to extend the delivery period of their best performing ads instead of creating new ones - as new campaigns will, of course, be subject to a fresh review.
This will prevent unnecessary delays, as merely changing the budget or start/end date for an existing ad will NOT trigger a new review (5/7)— Rob Leathern (@robleathern) March 19, 2020
Facebook also notes that these changes will also cause delays in approvals for its monetized content options:
"All monetized content goes through brand safety reviews. This includes Instant Articles and videos with in-stream ads. Since our ability to review new content is now limited, we won’t be able to approve all content for monetization. We’re working on how to support partners at this time."
This could be a big point of note for video creators who are looking to generate revenue from Facebook.
Of course, changes are being implemented across the board, and we're all working to understand this new landscape, and how we can navigate it and minimize its many impacts. The changes to Facebook's process are not ideal, but as with everything, we need to exercise a level of understanding and patience as we fill in the gaps and keep things churning through.
You can read more about Facebook's latest changes here.