Facebook Extends US Political Ad Ban For Another Month

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Email to advertisers confirms Facebook plan to extend its ban on political adverts in the United States for another month

Facebook has told advertisers that it intends to extend its ban on political adverts in the US for another month, to prevent confusion and abuse on the platform.

It comes after Joe Biden won the US Presidential Election, held on 3 November. But President Donald Trump is refused to concede defeat and has filed lawsuits in multiple US states, alleging voter fraud.

Facebook had announced in September that it would not take on any new political ads in the seven days prior to the US election. He said the firm was taking action to reduce the risks of misinformation and election interference. That ban was expected to last one week.

Election ad ban

Just before the election itself, Facebook also confirmed it had temporarily stopped recommendations for all political groups and all new groups.

That move was part of a broader effort by the company to curb misinformation around the election.

Facebook’s policy on limiting political ads before and after the election caused a furore when it emerged that the company had mistakenly barred ads from the Trump and Biden campaigns that had been running on the site before the Tuesday deadline.

The company’s filters were apparently overwhelmed by a last-minute surge in political ads, leading to glitches.

In one case, ads for the Trump campaign apparently urged people to vote on the wrong day.

Ad ban extension

But now Facebook reportedly expects that its post-election ban on political ads will last another month, according to an email the social media company sent to advertisers on Wednesday.

“While multiple sources have projected a presidential winner, we still believe it’s important to help prevent confusion or abuse on our platform,” Facebook said in the email, seen by Reuters.

A company spokesman declined to comment.

It should be noted that Facebook is not alone in this, amid the debate about voting integrity multiply on social media.

Alphabet’s Google also reportedly appears to be sticking with its post-election political ad ban.

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Author: Tom Jowitt
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