A drinks company has been accused of 'targeting children' through a soon-to-be launched Facebook advertising campaign for its alcoholic beverages.
Diageo will use the social networking platform to promote its brands including Baileys, Smirnoff Ice, and Guinness.
The company insists that the ads will only be seen by over 18s, and displayed only on certain parts of the site, but medics and academics have rubbished this, saying Facebook has no way of policing WHO sees the adverts because children lie about their age to sign up for an account.
Currently, Facebook's terms and conditions of use state that youngsters must be 13 or over to sign up for a profile, but a recent report said a quarter of eight- to 12-year-olds regularly use the site.
Diageo are said to be planning to spend around £6.5million on Facebook advertisements in the next year after a reported sales increase after placing ads on the US version.
Dr Vivienne Nathanson, a director at the British Medical Association condemned the plans, saying: 'The BMA has serious concerns about this deal.
'We know that drinking among young people is on the increase and we also know that children spend a lot of time on Facebook. Their access to alcohol marketing will be very difficult to regulate. This shows how the alcohol industry needs to be regulated in order to curb alcohol misuse.'
What do you think?
Should the adverts be allowed?
Should parents be policing their children's use of Facebook more?