Twitter Launches New US Issue Ads Policy to Provide Transparency

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Twitter Launches New US Issue Ads Policy to Provide Transparency

Mouhammed Abood

There are no doubts that recently, Twitter made several effective efforts to provide more transparency regarding advertising -specifically political Ads- on Twitter and prevent misuse of its own platform globally, especially after the Cambridge Analytica scandal.

Continuing its hard work and ongoing efforts, a few days ago, Twitter announced on its official platform that they are putting a set of new policies to the US Issue Ads and certification process.

An example of a political issues ad on Twitter

These newly announced policies will focus on only two types of ads on the Twitter platform, which are:

  1. Ads that refer to an election or a clearly identified candidate: A clearly identified candidate includes any candidate running for federal, state, or local election.
  2. Ads that advocate for legislative issues of national importance, including abortion, civil rights, climate change, guns, healthcare, immigration, national security, social security, taxes, and trade.

As explained by Twitter:

“These are the top-level issues we are considering under this policy, and we expect this list to evolve over time.”

Additionally, US Issue Ads will be underlined as such within the timeline to notify users who are promoting the ads and easily access more information, also with political campaigning ads.

 

Alongside the new Twitter US Issue Ads policies, Twitter also rolled out a new certification process that requires Issue Ads advertisers to verify their identities and locations within the US, in order to enable people to identify additional information about individuals or organizations promoting issue ads. According to that, Issue Ads Advertisers who need to create ads that fall under this policy have to apply for the certification process requirements, which are:

  1. Profile photo, header photo, and website must be consistent with the handle’s online presence.
  2. Bio must include a website that provides valid contact info.
  3. If handle name is not related to the certified entity, the bio must include the following disclaimer: “Owned by [certified entity name]
  4. All issue ads must use a “Paid for by” disclaimer.

It should be noted that Twitter also is putting some Restrictions and Exemption alongside their new policy.  Restrictions include prohibiting State-owned media or state authorities from buying political ads outside of the country in which they are located. But Exemptions include Advertisements promoted by news publishers and certified news organizations.

Finally, Twitter announced the date of enforcement of this new issue ads policy, that will start on September 30th, 2018, in the US only. In addition, it confirmed that advertisers who have not been properly certified will be stopped and the advertiser will be prompted to become certified.

 

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