In the last week before the upcoming US presidential election, Facebook will no longer allow new campaign ads. In this way, the platform wants to combat deception and propaganda.
In precisely two months, the Americans will elect a president, 35 of the 100 Senators and all 435 members of the House of Representatives.
The CEO and founder of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, announced the measures on Thursday. The campaign teams are still allowed to distribute their current ads in the last week, but they are no longer allowed to place new ads.
“I believe the best antidote to misinformation is more information, but in the last days before the election there may not be enough time to fight new claims,” Zuckerberg writes on Facebook.
Facebook also comes with other measures. For example, it limits how often a message can be forwarded via the Messenger chat app. This should prevent false rumours from circulating.
Zuckerberg: “We have already implemented this in WhatsApp at sensitive times and have found it effective in combating misinformation.”
Messages warning voters that they could contract the coronavirus at polling stations will be removed. And if a candidate claims victory before the results are official, Facebook will add a warning. Facebook will also work with the Reuters news agency to keep users informed of confirmed results.
Facebook came under fire after the presidential election four years ago for not doing enough against misrepresentation and influencing voters.