5 Ways Facebook Will Improve Transparency in Ads and Block Fake News

Over the last month, it was discovered that a Russian entity known as the Internet Research Agency, which aimed at amplifying racial and social discrimination, had published ads on Facebook between 2015 and 2017. Now the social networking giant is taking steps to strengthen their ads policies and enforcement.

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Although Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg had criticized the entire idea of ‘fake news on Facebook’ when they started drawing flak from various groups, the company started testing its fake news tool in Germany before the Deutsch elections in August 2017.

Now, Facebook is sharing a report of the 3,000 ads by Russian-run agencies that ran between 2015 and 2017 with the Congressional investigators.

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“We are sharing these ads with Congress because we want to do our part to help investigators gain a deeper understanding of Russian interference in the US political system and explain those activities to the public,” said Joel Kaplan, VP Global Public Policy, Facebook.

Last month, Zuckerberg had laid out the steps that will be taken to prevent abuse on the platform while still promoting relevant legitimate discussions surrounding social issues as well as civic debates.

How is Facebook Going to Improve Ads?

In order to make things better on the world’s biggest social media network, the company will be bringing about a few changes to their ad policies and enforcement that includes improving review of ads and ad accounts.

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“We care deeply about the integrity of elections around the world. We take responsibility for what happens on our platform and we will do everything we can to keep our community safe from interference,” Kaplan added.

Transparent Advertising

People were already made aware of the advertiser on the platform as each ad is displayed alongside the page promoting it. Now, to increase transparency and accountability of advertisers, Facebook will also be showing what other ads that page is running.

Now, to increase transparency and accountability of advertisers, Facebook will also be showing what other ads are run by the page — immaterial of whether you figure in the advertiser’s target audience or not.

Enforcement Against Improper Ads

Facebook makes use of both automatic and manual review process for ads on the platform. Now the ad review system will not only check the content of the ad but also its context.

In a bid to strengthen their manual review process, the company is hiring 1,000 people to join their global ads review team. They will also be investing more in machine learning to enable enhanced flagging and taking down of ads.


Restrictions on Advertiser Content

Facebook has strict community guidelines and even stricter guidelines for advertisers, which prevents them from posting ads with shocking content, direct threats, and sale or use of weapons.

Now, the company will be making these policies even stricter for advertisers that will now prevent ads that use even a subtle expressions of violence.

Increasing Requirements for Authenticity

Facebook’s new policies will require advertisers to file a more thorough documentation if they wish to run US federal election-related ads in the future.

Potential advertisers will need to confirm their business or organization before they can start buying ads on the platform.

Read More: How Facebook Picks your People You May Know

Establishing Industry Standards and Best Practices

Facebook will be working with industry leaders and governments worldwide to share information about bad actors on the platform and ensure that they stay off all the other social media platforms too.

Last updated on 02 February, 2022

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