Facebook allows landlords to violate the law: Cuomo

The investigation echoes a similar March suit against the social media giant from Housing and Urban Development

TRD New York /
Jul.July 03, 2019 03:15 PM
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (Credit: Getty Images)

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (Credit: Getty Images)

Facebook’s reputation is taking another hit: this time, it’s for continued claims of alleged fair housing discrimination.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Monday ordered the New York Department of Financial Services to investigate claims that Facebook is letting landlords use their advertising platform to reach the “right” kind of tenants. The reports claim that advertisers were using Facebook’s platform to screen out zip codes in order to target demographic groups that are protected classes, a problem that plagues the city 50 years after legislation was enacted to desegregate housing.

According to an official, the investigation will focus on how advertisers use Facebook’s platform, the New York Daily News reported.

“The allegations against Facebook advertisers are extremely troubling and fly in the face of everything that New York stands for,” Cuomo said. “(We will) investigate these claims and help ensure that New Yorkers seeking housing for themselves and their families are not discriminated against.”

In March, Cuomo reached an agreement to amend the New York State human rights law to add income to the list of protected classes under statewide law. The law prohibits landlords and lenders from cherry picking groups of people based on race, religion, national origin, familial status, sex and disability, among others. But the myriad of options Facebook offers advertisers — including selecting zip code — raise questions about enforceability. The claims echo some of the allegations lobbed against Facebook in a March Housing and Urban Development suit. [NYDN] — Georgia Kromrei


Related Articles

arrow_forward_ios
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Hudson Yards (Credit: Getty Images and Wikipedia)

Facebook close to finalizing Hudson Yards office deal: report

Facebook close to finalizing Hudson Yards office deal: report
State Sens. Brian Kavanagh and Kevin Thomas (NY Gov; Getty; iStock)

“What would we discipline them for?”: Brokers deny discrimination at heated hearing

“What would we discipline them for?”: Brokers deny discrimination at heated hearing
Zumper CEO Anthemos Georgiades (Getty; iStock)

What you need to know about Zumper, a $400M startup accused of renter bias

What you need to know about Zumper, a $400M startup accused of renter bias
State Sens. James Gaughran, Brian Kavanagh and Kevin Thomas (NY Gov; Getty)

State Senate hearing confronts racial bias by brokers

State Senate hearing confronts racial bias by brokers
Zumper CEO Anthemos Georgiades (iStock)

Zumper systematically screened out low-income renters: report

Zumper systematically screened out low-income renters: report
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and REI CEO Eric Artz with a rendering of the headquarters in Bellevue, Washington (Getty; REI; NBBJ)

Facebook buys office campus near Seattle for $368M

Facebook buys office campus near Seattle for $368M
Facebook's Mark Zuckerburg with a rendering of the Farley Post Office redevelopment and Google's Sundar Pichai with a rendering of St. John's Terminal (Getty; COOKFOX Architects; VNO)

Making sense of Facebook, Google and the office bubble aftermath

Making sense of Facebook, Google and the office bubble aftermath
Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and Zillow’s Rich Barton (Getty)

Got space? Manhattan office availability hits 7-year high

Got space? Manhattan office availability hits 7-year high
arrow_forward_ios

The Deal's newsletters give you the latest scoops, fresh headlines, marketing data, and things to know within the industry.

Loading...