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5 Things to Remember About Political and Issue Advertising Around the US 2020 Election

UPDATE - Dec. 15, 2020 at 11:30AM PT: 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. As a result, starting tomorrow, Dec. 16, we will begin allowing eligible advertisers who have completed the ads authorization process in the US to resume running ads about the Georgia runoff elections in the state of Georgia only. We will reject ads that target locations outside of Georgia or that are not about the Georgia runoff elections for violating our Advertising Policies. You can learn more about what to expect and next steps here.

UPDATE - Nov. 20, 2020 at 6AM PT: With Giving Tuesday just around the corner, we're sharing some helpful reminders for nonprofits and businesses running ads in the US during our temporary pause on ads about social issues, politics or elections. As a reminder, businesses and nonprofits in the US can continue running ads or create new ads that are not about social issues, politics, or elections. For examples of ads that can and can’t run, visit our Help Center.

UPDATE - Nov. 11, 2020 at 2:45PM PT: The temporary pause for ads about politics and social issues in the US continues to be in place as part of our ongoing efforts to protect the election. Advertisers can expect this to last another month, though there may be an opportunity to resume these ads sooner. You can find more details here.

The upcoming US election will be unlike any other. It’s why we’ve developed policies and products for political and issue ads on Facebook and Instagram and implemented industry-leading transparency standards.

1. These ads need authorization and disclaimers.

If you’re running an ad about social issues, elections or politics, your ad must get authorized and include a “paid for by” disclaimer. Learn more about the process for getting authorized and creating a disclaimer.

2. They’re included in our Ad Library.

Ads about social issues, elections or politics are included in our publicly available, searchable Ad Library for seven years. The Ad Library provides advertising transparency by offering a comprehensive, searchable collection of all ads currently running from across Facebook apps and services, including Instagram. Our Ad Library is accessed by over 2 million people a month.

3. Starting Oct. 27, we’re not accepting new political or issue ads.

We know it’s important that campaigns are able to run get out the vote campaigns, but in the final days of an election there may not be enough time to contest new claims, which is why we aren’t accepting new political or issue ads in the final week. If you run one of these ads prior to Oct. 27, you’ll be able to continue running them through Election Day. You’ll also still be able to adjust your bid, budget and targeting for those ads. Learn more about the restriction period.

Note that if you go to the Ad Library during the restriction period, you may still see ads with a “Paid for by” disclaimer that look like they started running after Oct. 27. This will be the case if an advertiser changed the targeting, budget or bid. To determine when the first iteration of that ad began running, you’ll need to click into the analytics page for that ad in the Ad Library.

4. We’ll temporarily stop running these ads after Nov. 3.

We’ll temporarily stop running all social issue, electoral and political ads in the US after the polls close on Nov. 3 to reduce opportunities for confusion or abuse. Advertisers can expect this to last for a week, though this is subject to change. “Social issues” are sensitive topics that are heavily debated, may influence the outcome of an election, or result in or relate to existing or proposed legislation. Read more about social issues.

5. Ads related to voting are subject to additional prohibitions.

Ads related to voting around the Nov. 3, 2020 election are subject to additional prohibitions, which includes ads that seek to delegitimize methods of voting as illegal or corrupt, prematurely claim victory and delegitimize an election as fraudulent or corrupt because the result can't be determined on the final day of voting. Learn more about these policies.

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