June 24, 2015 08:00 ET

Ello Launches Pro-Privacy Advertising Campaign on Facebook

Millions-Strong Ad-Free Social Network Uses Facebook Targeting Tools to Highlight Privacy Concerns & Data Collection on Social Networks

DENVER, CO--(Marketwired - Jun 24, 2015) - Today Ello, the beautiful & ad-free social network, launched a month long advertising campaign on Facebook.

Ello's attention-grabbing ads use Facebook's highly sophisticated demographic targeting tools to graphically illustrate to Facebook users the depth of data being collected on them, and to highlight negative effects of ads on social network experience.

"Ads on social networks suck," said Ello CEO & Co-Founder Paul Budnitz. "It's way more fun and much safer to post and connect with friends on a social network that isn't sucking up and selling all your personal data."

Ello is utilizing Facebook's unique ability to target users by real name, email, age, sex, hometown, buying habits, political affiliation, religion, sexual preference, and to access stored data from users' personal messages, to create and place highly customized ads.

Ello's ads, which conform to Facebook's policies, include targeted taglines such as "They told us you're single in NYC" and "We paid for you to see this ad," along with customized images related to user interests and retargeted browsing habits.

(Example ads are attached to this press release.)

"On Ello all posts are chronological, there are no ads, and there are no manipulative algorithms or boosted posts," said Budnitz. "Facebook isn't a competitor because unlike Ello, it isn't really a social network at all. Facebook is first and foremost an advertising platform, which makes it the ideal place to point out serious privacy issues and other problems with these practices."

According to articles published in Journalism in the Public Interest ProPublica(1), Facebook has been exposing users' private information for years by scanning private messages for links, allowing advertisers to target users based on email address, phone number and websites visited. In addition, Facebook has outed users' personal lives by updating privacy settings to public without warning.

Over the summer Ello will launch similar campaigns on other ad-based networks including Tumblr, Twitter, Google, and Pinterest, as well as a billboard and street poster campaign.

About Ello

Ello is a beautiful and ad-free social network where you can connect with friends, be inspired, and share what matters most.

Launched as a beta in September 2014 with just 90 people on the network, Ello has evolved into a full-featured social network with a new iPhone app and millions of enthusiastic users worldwide.

Ello's iOS app launched in mid-June 2015, and has been featured and downloaded hundreds of thousands of times in its first few days in the App store.

Ello has a particularly strong following among the creative community and small businesses worldwide. As a Public Benefit Corporation, Ello exists for user benefit and will never show ads or sell user data. There are no algorithms that prioritize paid content over messages from people you follow. On Ello users post the things they love for all their followers to see for free.

Visit Ello:
Ello's Founders:
View the Ello Manifesto:
Ello for iOS:

(1.) "The Best Reporting on Facebook and Your Privacy", last modified October 12, 2012.

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