Facebook to Lift Some Restrictions on Political Ads for Georgia Runoffs

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg closeup
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Facebook will lift certain restrictions on political ads ahead of the Georgia senate runoffs, although it will still prohibit ads disputed by its left-leaning third-party “fact checkers.”

The tech giant suspended ads for political, social, and election issues in the week leading up to election day 2020, and then extended the ban in the days following November 3.

In a statement earlier today, Facebook said the ban will be partially lifted, specifically for ads regarding Georgia’s two Senate races, which will determine whether Democrats or Republicans control the Senate.

Via Facebook:

We are maintaining our temporary pause for ads about social issues, elections or politics in the US. However, in recent weeks we’ve heard feedback from experts and advertisers across the political spectrum about the importance of expressing voice and using our tools to reach voters ahead of Georgia’s runoff elections. We agree that our ad tools are an important way for people to get information about these elections. So we have developed a process to allow advertisers to run ads with the purpose of reaching voters in Georgia about Georgia’s runoff elections.

Starting tomorrow, Wednesday December 16 at 9AM PT, we will begin enabling advertisers who are authorized to run ads about social issues, elections or politics to run ads specifically in Georgia. We will prioritize onboarding advertisers with direct involvement in these elections, including the campaigns, state and local elections officials, and state and national political parties. Advertisers who have previously completed the authorizations process to run these types of ads and have a need to run them for these elections, can learn more here.

Facebook said it would continue to prohibit ads that include content that has been “debunked” by third-party fact checkers.

We will reject ads that target locations outside of Georgia or that are not about the elections for violating our Advertising Policies. And, we will continue to prohibit any ad that includes content debunked by third-party fact-checkers or delegitimizes the Georgia runoff elections.

Facebook’s “fact checkers” include USA Today and the Washington Post, both competitors of conservative media.

When a post is fact-checked on Facebook, its distribution is reduced. This empowers the mainstream, corporate media to punish their competitors and force them to adhere to their worldview.

For example, in June, USA Today allowed an intern to “fact check” a Breitbart News story because they disagreed with Breitbart’s use of the term “amnesty.”

In other words, Facebook’s system forces Breitbart News to follow the mainstream media’s definition of “amnesty,” or else be potentially subject to reduced distribution.

Allum Bokhari is the senior technology correspondent at Breitbart News. His new book, #DELETED: Big Tech’s Battle to Erase the Trump Movement and Steal The Election, which contains exclusive interviews with sources inside Google, Facebook, and other tech companies, is currently available for purchase.

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