Facebook has announced that it is taking steps to bring transparency to political ads running in India. The move follows similar rollouts to the U.S., Brazil, and the UK. The move is in anticipation of India’s general election next year and Facebook doesn’t want its platform to be misused by malicious entities to spread false information during the process.
The news from Facebook that it will tighten up political ads on its platform comes hot on the heels of an ad campaign from WhatsApp, which is owned by Facebook, that tries to highlight the dangers of spreading fake news around groups on messaging platforms.
In order to run political ads on Facebook in India that relate to politics, advertisers will have to confirm their identity, location, and other details about who is placing the ad. Facebook is urging those who wish to advertise to provide ID now as the verification process will take several weeks. This will help campaigns avoid delays come next year when they start running ads. If you need to register, you can find out more information here.
For end users, Facebook will provide a disclaimer on all political ads that will include information on who placed the ad. There will also be an Ad Library giving users the ability to search all ad content easily and find additional information such as the budget for individual ads, a range of impressions, and the demographics of those who view the ad.
News organizations that want to publish ads that include political content will not have to undergo the authorization process before they are allowed to publish ads, nor will those ads appear in the Ad Library.