Facebook launches ads transparency tools in Canada ahead of 2019 federal election

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Now, advertisers can complete authorizations and place ads in the Ad Library for 7 years, going above and beyond the requirements of C-76

TORONTOJune 10, 2019 /CNW/ – Building on its efforts to give people more information about the ads they see across Facebook and Instagram, and to help combat foreign interference, as of 12 p.m. ET today, Facebook is launching new transparency tools in Canada ahead of the 2019 federal election. These efforts provide the tools to enable compliance with the obligations of C-76Facebook’s most recent election integrity efforts in Canada include:

  • The launch of an authorizations process for advertisers in Canada as well as an Ad Library and API;
  • Rollout of Canada-specific issues identified under the “Ads About Social Issues, Elections or Politics” policy.

“We take the protection of elections on Facebook very seriously, which is why we’ve devoted significant time and resources in support of C-76, and will continue to make investments that help protect the Canadian election from interference on our platforms,” said Kevin Chan, head of Public Policy at Facebook Canada. “At Facebook, we are committed to bringing a new level of ad transparency to Canadians, so they know more about the ads they see across our platforms. We have done the hard work to build tools and policies that require advertisers to complete an authorizations process, including confirming their identity and location, before running ads about social issues, elections or politics. These ads will be publicly available in the Ad Library for 7 years.”

Ad Authorization Tools 
Now, anyone who wants to run ads about social issues, elections or politics in Canada will need to first confirm their identity and location in Canada, and disclose who is responsible for the ad. To help prevent foreign interference, all advertisers in Canada will need to be authorized in Canada to run ads about social issues, elections or politics. An advertiser can select themselves, a Page they run or another organization to appear in the “Paid for by” disclaimer. To increase accountability on Facebook, if a Page name or different organization name is selected, the advertiser must provide additional information, like a phone number, email, business address and website. Per Canadian election law, an “agent name” field will also be available.

Identity confirmation will occur at the individual level, and will require:

  1. Two-factor authentication for accounts
  2. Valid, Canadian Government-issued ID — including passport, driver’s license, identity card (Provincial), or a Certificate of Indian Status
  3. Location verification through a postal mailed verification code

More information about this process can be found here. Authorizations may take a few weeks to complete so advertisers can start this process today to help avoid delays when we start detecting these types of ads later this month.

Ad Library
Per our policy, ads about social issues, elections or politics will be placed in the Ad Library for 7 years. There, people can learn more about the ad like its range of impressions and spend, as well as demographic information about the people who saw the ad such as age, gender and location. The Ad Library will include both ads that run with a disclaimer, and ads that run without a disclaimer if they are reported and determined to relate to social issues, elections or politics. We’ll also provide transparency for agent name, which certain advertisers may be required to provide, under C-76.

We know we can’t protect elections on our own, which is why we now also offer access to the Ad Library API, which we built expressly for researchers, academics, journalists and the public to study social issues, electoral, or political advertising. We also plan to provide a tool specifically for regulators in Canada later this month.

For more information on the Ad Library, you can visit our Help Center.

Social Issues in Canada
In Canada, where there aren’t laws or agencies that list key issues that need to be captured in the Ad Library, Facebook consulted with a group of prominent Canadian leaders, representing Canada’s broad political spectrum. Facebook partnered with these local experts to identify seven social issues that advertisers in Canada may discuss, debate or advocate for or against, on Facebook and could influence elections. Anyone wanting to place ads related to these issues will need to complete the ad authorization process:

  • Civil and social rights
  • Economy
  • Environmental politics
  • Health
  • Immigration
  • Political Values and Governance
  • Security and Foreign Policy

About Facebook Canada
Founded in 2004, Facebook’s mission is to give people the power to build community and bring the world closer together. More than 24 million Canadians use Facebook to stay connected with friends and family, to discover what’s going on in the world, and to share and express what matters to them. Facebook® is a registered trademark of Facebook Inc. All other brand or product names mentioned may be trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders.

SOURCE Facebook Canada

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