Facebook Apologizes for Overstating Video Metrics
Facebook apologized on Friday for an error in the way it measured video viewership, a miscalculation that greatly overstated how much time, on average, its users were spending watching videos.
The incorrect numbers were displayed to partners, including advertisers and publishers, for more than two years, as Facebook aggressively challenged YouTube for online video dominance and urged partners to embrace video publishing and advertising on the platform.
While Facebook called the problem a “discrepancy,’’ it is a troublesome admission for major advertising agencies and publishers that rely on Facebook’s metrics to assess their investments on the platform — whether a 15-second ad or a lengthy video production.
It is also likely to add to advertisers’ long-held frustrations with Facebook and other internet platforms over how closely they guard valuable audience data, and the limits the tech companies place on outside measurement companies.