Increasing Ad Transparency Ahead of India’s General Elections

By Sarah Clark Schiff, Product Manager at Facebook

It’s important that people know more about the ads they see — especially those that reference political figures, political parties, elections, and legislation. That’s why we’re making big changes to the way we manage these ads on Facebook and Instagram. We’ve rolled out these changes in the US, Brazil, and the UK, and next, we’re taking our first steps towards bringing transparency to ads related to politics in India.

This is key as we work hard to prevent abuse on Facebook ahead of India’s general elections next year.

Get Started with Authorizations Today

Now anyone who wants to run an ad in India related to politics will need to first confirm their identity and location, and give more details about who placed the ad. The identity and location confirmation will take a few weeks so advertisers can start that process today by using their mobile phones or computer to submit proof of identity and location. This will help avoid delays when they run political ads next year.

Advertisers can download the latest Facebook app and visit Settings to get started.

Looking Ahead

Early next year, we’ll start to show a disclaimer on all political ads that provides more information about who’s placing the ad, and an online searchable Ad Library for anyone to access. This is a library of all ads related to politics from a particular advertiser as well as information like the budget associated with an individual ad, a range of impressions, as well as the demographics of who saw the ad.

At that time, we’ll also begin to enforce the policy that requires all ads related to politics be run by an advertiser who’s completed the authorizations process and be labeled with the disclaimer. We will not require eligible news publishers to get authorized, and we won’t include their ads in the Ad Library.

By authorizing advertisers and bringing more transparency to ads, we can better defend against foreign interference in India’s elections.