Facebook to ban political ads prematurely claiming victory before US election results: Report

Hemani Sheth Mumbai | Updated on September 24, 2020 Published on September 24, 2020

This is an extension to the platform’s policies announced earlier by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg

Facebook will reject political ads claiming that a particular candidate has won the US Presidential Elections 2020 before the final results are tabulated, according to a report by Fast Company.

“We will be rejecting political ads that claim victory before the results of the 2020 election have been declared,” a Facebook spokesperson said as quoted by the report.

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The policy has been announced owing to in-mail voting amid the Covid-19 pandemic. Winners have been projected by midnight in the past. However, in-mail voting will affect these projections as per the report.

This is an extension to the platform’s policies announced earlier this month by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

“I'm also worried that with our nation so divided and election results potentially taking days or even weeks to be finalised, there could be an increased risk of civil unrest across the country,” Zuckerberg had written in a post on September 3.

He had announced that the platform would be blocking new political and issue ads during the final week of the campaign. However, it had later changed the policy and stated that political campaigns would be allowed to post ads from November 4, as per the Fast Company report.

Platform’s policies

Zuckerberg had also detailed the platform’s policies about voter suppression and election misinformation in the post.

“Since the pandemic means that many of us will be voting by mail, and since some states may still be counting valid ballots after election day, many experts are predicting that we may not have a final result on election night. It's important that we prepare for this possibility in advance and understand that there could be a period of intense claims and counter-claims as the final results are counted,” he had said.

Facebook will also be posting an information label on content that “seeks to de-legitimise the outcome of the election or discuss the legitimacy of voting methods,” he had said.

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Published on September 24, 2020
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