TEHRAN, Young Journalists Club (YJC) - As the largest social media service in nearly every big country, Facebook since 2016 has become a means for politicians and their adversaries to distribute fake news and other propaganda.
Buying Facebook ads can widen the audience for such material, but some of those influence efforts may violate election rules and the company’s policies.
Under pressure from authorities around the world, Facebook last year introduced several initiatives to increase oversight of political ads.
Beginning on Wednesday in Nigeria, only advertisers located in the country will be able to run electoral ads, mirroring a policy unveiled during an Irish referendum last May, Katie Harbath, Facebook’s director of global politics and outreach, said in an interview.
The same policy will take effect in Ukraine in February. Nigeria holds a presidential election on Feb. 16, while Ukraine will follow on March 31.
In India, which votes for parliament this spring, Facebook will place electoral ads in a searchable online library starting from next month, said Rob Leathern, a director of product management at the company.
The European Union would get a version of that authorization and transparency system ahead of the bloc’s parliamentary elections in May.
Facebook believes that holding the ads in a library for seven years is a key part of fighting intereference, he added.
The library will resemble archives brought to the United States, Brazil and Britain last year.