Facebook Imposes Stricter Ad Rules Ahead Of EU Elections

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Facebook is planning to toughen up the rules surrounding the paid political advertising in its platform in order to prevent foreign interference in elections.

In an interview with some reporters in Brussels today, Sir Nick Clegg, the former deputy prime minister of the United Kingdom and the current global policy chief of Facebook, disclosed that Facebook will require political parties to register as advertisers on the platform.

It is considered as his first public appearance since getting the job last October.

Clegg stated: “We will require those wanting to run political and issue ads to be authorised, and we will display a ‘paid for by’ disclaimer on those ads.”

The said changes will go live before elections in the European parliament that is scheduled this spring.

Facebook added that it “has more than 30,000 people working on safety and security across the company, three times as many as we had in 2017.”

The social media giant is aiming to expand these tools globally before the end of June.

Facebook has been under intensifying scrutiny from lawmakers and regulators since it was revealed that Cambridge Analytica had improperly utilised Facebook data to target electoral advertising.

All political ads will be stored in a searchable online library for a maximum of seven years, with information including who paid for the ad, the amount that was spent, and the demographics of those who saw them.

The new tools will also cover so-called issue ads, which are related to controversial topics including immigration and those that do not support a specific party.

Facebook said that it will set up regional operation centres in Singapore and Dublin to monitor its election-related content. It is designed to “add a layer of defence against fake news, hate speech and voter suppression.”

Clegg denied the reports that the tech company had plans to launch a subscription-based service in the place of its existing ads-only business model.