Several months have passed since Facebook chose to remove political ads on its platform. Today, the company announced that this veto will be lifted as of March 4.
- It was in November 2020 when Facebook made the decision to veto the circulation of political ads within its platform
- At the time, the social network claimed that it was a measure to put a stop to the dissemination of false news that put the population at risk
- It will be on March 4 when advertisements with political content begin to operate again: what will the new rules be?
Facebook has announced the taking of a decision that had taken more than three months to define: it is about lifting the veto of advertisements with political content.
According to reports from the news network NBC, Facebook announced just on March 3 that it will lift the ban on advertisements with political content within its platform.
These announcements include all those related to political, electoral and social issues, which were vetoed as a result of the presidential elections on November 3, 2020.
Four months have passed since the company decided to put a stop to political speculation related to the presidential elections in the United States, to which social activism campaigns and unverified messages were added regarding the arrival of vaccines against Covid -19.
Just in October, Facebook said it would put a total stop to political ads, although at that time the company did not define the period during which the measure would continue in force in the United States; This, they assured, had its origin in the prevention of abuse or confusion that could negatively impact the users of this social network.
In a statement issued on March 3, Facebook stated that “Unlike other platforms, we require authorization and transparency, not only for political and electoral advertisements, but also for those related to social causes, and our systems do not distinguish between between these categories. ”
They also stressed that “We have received comments related to this decision, and we have learned more about the political and electoral announcements during this election cycle. As a result, we plan to take these next few months to take a closer look at how these ads work on our service to see how these changes can be valued. “
Although Facebook initially announced that the ban would cover the entire United States, the decision was made last October to resume them in the state of Georgia, which was preparing for its own elections to determine which party would win the majority of the Senate in January.
When the time came to lift the ban in Georgia, Facebook published a blog post on its website, in which it assured that the lifting of the veto was due to an exchange of opinions with some candidates and other political groups, which they considered necessary to ads to reach more voters.
After listening to stakeholders, Facebook issued a statement in which it claimed to have reached an agreement to add tools that would be useful to voters, so they developed a specific process to reach Georgia voters with official and verified information previously.
Why has Facebook banned the generation of political ads within its platform?
The veto that will be lifted on March 4 marks a precedent in the history of Facebook, and marks the end of 4 turbulent months on the American political scene.
At first, it was learned that the main objective in the prohibition of advertisements was to put a total halt to the generation and dissemination of false information that could lead to civil confrontations in the country.
However, before the announcement, the criticisms did not wait, and the campaign committee of the Democratic party in Georgia assured that said ban could be harmful to the voting process, since voters would not be aware of the most relevant events related to it.
Facebook was also joined by Google, which assumed an electoral silence that aimed to avoid, as far as possible, violent confrontations before, during and after the elections.
Scott Fairchild, executive director of the Democratic Senate Campaign Committee, suggested that the ban on political ads is “just a crackdown,” and demanded that an exception be made for the state of Georgia.
Fairchild also raised concerns about this, explaining that “Organic disinformation is the real problem with these platforms, and continuing to ban ads is currently doing damage to organizations working on behalf of voters in Georgia.”
In an interview with CBS, Julia Rosen, a Los Angeles-based digital consultancy, analyzed the situation and concluded that Facebook’s decision would negatively affect to the remaining election campaigns in the state of Georgia, and was emphatic in saying that “For years, it has been difficult to reach an audience of people who have interacted or followed a page without paying Facebook to promote outreach,” adding that “With the ban on political ads, that possibility does not exist. It is not possible to speak to your audience. “