Facebook has announced a new set of updates designed to strengthen its political advertising tools and stop misuse by politically-motivated groups in the lead up to the 2020 US Election.
Today, Facebook is sharing additional steps they are taking to protect elections and prepare for the US 2020 election. Those steps include strengthening the authorization process for US advertisers, showing people more information about each advertiser and updating the Facebook list of social issues in the US to better reflect the public discourse on and off Facebook.
Facebook’s new regulations aim to rectify this, requiring US political advertisers to provide:
- A US street address
- A phone number
- A business email and a business website matching the email
- And either one of a tax-registered organization identification number, a government website domain that matches an email (ending in .gov or .mil), or a Federal Election Commission (FEC) identification number
In addition to this, Facebook is also streamlining its political issues list from 20 to 10 categories.
Those 10 political ‘issues’ are:
- Civil and social rights
- Environmental politics
- Political values and governance
- Security and foreign policy
Facebook says that the update will bring the US list in line with issue lists in countries who have recently held elections.
“The shift from 20 subjects to 10 categories does not mean that our authorization process will be less restrictive. We’ll continue to capture a range of topics encompassed by the 10 referenced categories.”
These additional updates will be the first step in ensuring Facebook is doing all it can to protect users against such campaigning, and avoid misuse.