Meta to ban political ads in final week for US midterm elections

Meta (formerly Facebook) has announced to disable new political, electoral and social issue ads a week before the voting in US midterm elections in November.

Ads that have previously run before the restriction period will be allowed to run during this time.

“To simplify the process from the last cycle, any edits related to creative, placement, targeting and optimisation won’t be permitted,” Nick Clegg, President, Global Affairs, said in a statement.

The restriction period will lift the day after the election and “we have no plans to extend it,” he said late on Tuesday.

Meta said that hundreds of people across more than 40 teams are working on the midterms polls, and it spent approximately $5 billion globally on safety and security last year alone.

The company said it will not allow any posts or ads that misrepresent key details about the voting process, including the date, time and methods of voting.

“We will reject ads encouraging people not to vote or calling into question the legitimacy of the upcoming election,” said Clegg.

The company said it is also investing in proactive threat detection and expanding our policies to help address coordinated harassment and threats of violence against election officials and poll workers.

State and local election officials continue to use Voting Alerts on Facebook to send the latest information about registering and voting to people in their communities.

“This year, we’re also showing election-related in-Feed notifications in a second language other than English if we think the second language may be better understood,” said Meta.

“While some of the challenges in 2020 were unique, we are once again prepared to respond to content discussing the integrity of the election by applying labels that connect people with reliable information,” Clegg noted.

Facebook had paused political ads for the first time on November 4, 2020.

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