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More Red Faces at Facebook after Third Metrics Glitch

December 12 2016

Facebook has owned up to another problem with the metrics it provides to advertisers, this time surrounding discrepancies between like and share button counts and those for mobile search queries.

The social media giant is currently the object of a lawsuit brought by three advertisers following its initial confession this summer, that it had drastically overstated the time users spend watching its video ads. A month ago the firm owned up to more errors, in its reporting of page visits, and announced moves to give users 'more clarity and confidence about the insights it provides' - including new partnerships, more communication about activities and the formation of a new 'Measurement Council'. VP of Global Marketing Solutions Carolyn Everson told the Wall Street Journal the company is now considering the possibility of submitting its procedures for audit by the USA's Media Rating Council (MRC) - a move called for by the ANA.

In a post this week in its newly-launched Metrics FYI blog, the company said it was 'looking into' why inputting a URL as a search query in its mobile app seems sometimes to display different counts to those generated by Like and Share buttons, and said it would 'notify partners as soon as it has an update'.

The firm also said it had been mis-sorting users' responses to Live videos, in metrics reported in its Page Insights tool. Where the same viewer responded more than once to a video, all but the first have been allocated to the 'Reactions from Shares of Post' count instead of the 'Reactions on Post' column. Total counts have been correct, but users can now expect to see major shifts between the two columns.

Another blog update says the company has updated the estimates generated for potential overall reach and estimated daily reach, when clients create a new ad; and that it was improving its methodology for sampling and extrapolating potential audience sizes, to improve forecasts across Facebook, Instagram and Audience Network platforms.

All articles 2006-18 written and edited by Mel Crowther and/or Nick Thomas.

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