IF YOU logged into Facebook at the weekend, chances are you were met with an array of rainbow colours radiating from your friends’ profile pictures.
The rainbow-filtered pictures were created for users to show support gay rights after it was announced the US Supreme Court had legalised same-sex marriage nationwide.
According to the social media website, more than 26 million users changed their profile pics to support the movement.
While it tracked the number of users applying the filter, Facebook insists it will not use the data for marketing purposes.
“This was not an experiment or test, but rather something that enables people to show their support of the LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer) community on Facebook,” a company spokesman told Mashable.
“We aren’t going to use this as a way to target ads and the point of this tool is not to get information about people.”
Arnold Schwarzenegger was one of the 26 million users to apply the filter. Source: Supplied
Facebook decided it would implement the filter after two interns showcased the tool at an internal hackathon.
While the company insists the tool was nothing more than a celebration of equality, some marketing professionals think the data could be very useful.
The chief marketing officer of global mobile company Glipsia, Nicole DeMeo, said the rainbow-filtered profile pictures could help the spread of information within the LGBTQ community and its supporters.
“If a person uses the rainbow filter, we can assume that they’re in support of LGBT rights; in theory, a network could then send offers such as LGBT related events, content and media to that user,” she said.
“For someone in support of pride and the landmark Supreme Court decision, this is another data point or gateway to help serve more targeted offers.
“This both serves the network well and it serves the user, so that brands and organisations can find their audiences and it’s better for the user by cutting out the clutter of intrusive, irrelevant ads.”