By DAVID BANKERPublished April 13, 2018 07:24:10AUSTIN, Texas — Facebook, the social networking company, and Google, the search engine, agreed Monday to pay $500M to settle allegations they violated antitrust laws by allowing users to share advertisements in other users’ pages.
Facebook and Google each agreed to pay the other $200M, according to court documents.
The terms of the settlement are confidential.
In its settlement agreement, Facebook said it would share revenue from its AdSense and AdSense Marketplace business and “provide a mechanism to allow users to opt out of certain types of advertisements.”
It also said it will allow users who opt out to have their ads appear in others’ pages, and would give them the option to remove those ads if they so choose.
Google said it has also agreed to allow ads to appear in users’ News Feeds in a similar way as Facebook.
Both companies said the settlement would help “to eliminate unnecessary duplication of content” on both platforms.
Facebook said the company would make more than 1 billion ads available to its users, with 50% coming from advertisers, and 25% from third parties.
The deal comes amid growing concerns about online privacy and online advertising.
Last week, Facebook announced it would remove a feature that allows people to anonymously report suspicious activity in its network.
In a letter to U.S. senators, the company said the changes to the “Report” feature, which allows people anonymously report the behavior of others in the network, are being rolled back due to user feedback.
Facebook is also working to make its ads more targeted to specific audiences.