And now, two of the most predominant online advertising companies have put a ban on bail bond ads as of last month. This means that all for-profit bail bond agencies are not allowed to advertise their services on Facebook and Google. The change of rule is sad because so many individuals and families greatly benefit from the option of using bail bonds.
These two online advertising tycoons claim that their decision to eliminate bail bond advertisements was founded on a broader initiative to protect their users from damaging or hurtful content, namely fraud. Additional bans that have been made recently by Google and Facebook include marijuana, payday loans, guns, and cryptocurrencies (i.e. Bitcoin).
Google’s senior director of global product policy, David Graff, communicated that Google was convinced to make their decision after reviewing studies that suggested bail bond agencies profited off of underprivileged and minority communities in which individuals who are arrested often must go into a financial deficit in order to purchase a bail bond.
He later wrote in a blog post, “”We made this decision based on our commitment to protect our users from deceptive or harmful products, but the issue of bail bond reform has drawn support from a wide range of groups and organizations who have shared their work and perspectives with us.”
As for Facebook, vice president of global policy management, Monika Bickert, allegedly stated that the company would discontinue accepting advertisements from companies in the bail bond industry. She expressed that, “Advertising that is predatory doesn’t have a place on Facebook.”
The Bail Bond Industry Remains Unaffected
Don Mescia is the executive director of United Bail of America, an advocacy group for bail agents. As a response to Google’s announcement, he stated that their decision was “another example of the moral and ethical failings of the American society.” Last year, before the ban, he also stated, “There is a growing and completely misguided effort to end the bail system in the United States. No one wants to see people incarcerated, awaiting trial for petty crimes and causing personal hardship. But solutions to the problem should be focused on making sure that the defendants appear in court when they should so that justice can be served. That is, after all, the point of the court system.”
According to Jeff Clayton, executive director of the American Bail Coalition (a trade association), the bans on bail bond ads will not have a significant impact on the bail bonds industry. He explained that bail bond websites will still show up under “organic” web searches. He further went on to say, “They’ll just have to change their search optimizations to compete with competitors.”
Benefits of Bail Bonds
Life goes on after an arrest, even if the person remains in jail. This is one reason why bail bondsmen can be so vital. Everyone knows that sometimes bad things happen to good people; and in the instance that a person is arrested, there are potential consequences that bail can help avoid, such as missing work, reducing lost wages, childcare arrangements, and more.
Also, bail bonds are financial liberators when it comes to the cost of a defendant’s bond, which can range anywhere from $2,000 to one million dollars or more. Another great advantage to being released from jail on a bail bond is getting a legal head start. Defendants can hire a reputable lawyer, who then has time to thoroughly examine their case and prepare a strong defense prior to their hearing.