Product

New Transparency For Ads on Twitter

By Bruce Falck
Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Today, we're announcing steps to dramatically increase transparency for all ads on Twitter, including political ads and issue-based ads. We will also be improving controls for our customers and adopting stricter advertising policies. 

All Ads: Advertising Transparency Center

In the coming weeks, we will launch an industry-leading transparency center that will offer everyone visibility into who is advertising on Twitter, details behind those ads, and tools to share your feedback with us.

Specifically, the Transparency Center will show:

  • All ads that are currently running on Twitter, including Promoted-Only ads
  • How long ads have been running
  • Ad creative associated with those campaigns
  • Ads targeted to you, as well as personalized information on which ads you are eligible to receive based on targeting

People can also report inappropriate ads or give negative feedback (i.e. “I don’t like this ad”) for every ad running on Twitter, whether the ad targets you or not. This feedback will help us more quickly remove inappropriate ads from Twitter, and show you more relevant ads in your timeline.

Political (Electioneering) Ads

Electioneering ads are those that refer to a clearly identified candidate (or party associated with that candidate) for any elected office.* To make it clear when you are seeing or engaging with an electioneering ad, we will now require that electioneering advertisers identify their campaigns as such. We will also change the look and feel of these ads and include a visual political ad indicator.

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In the Transparency Center, there will be a special section for electioneering ads that will include:

  • All ads that are currently running or that have run on Twitter, including Promoted-Only ads
  • Disclosure on total campaign ad spend by advertiser
  • Transparency about the identity of the organization funding the campaign
  • Targeting demographics, such as age, gender and geography
  • Historical data about all electioneering ad spending by advertiser

We are also updating our policies for electioneering advertisers to:

  • Include stricter requirements on who can serve these ads and limit targeting options
  • Require electioneering advertisers to self-identify as such
  • Introduce stronger penalties for advertisers who violate policies

Regarding Issue-Based Ads

We are committed to stricter policies and transparency around issue-based ads. There is currently no clear industry definition for issue-based ads but we will work with our peer companies, other industry leaders, policy makers, and ad partners to clearly define them quickly and integrate them into the new approach mentioned above.

The Way Forward

We will make these updates first in the U.S., and then roll them out globally. We will share our progress here with all of you along the way.

Last week, Senators Mark Warner (D-VA), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and John McCain (R-AZ) and Representatives Derek Kilmer (D-WA), and Mike Coffman (R-CO) introduced the Honest Ads Act legislation. We thank these members and others for their foresight in drawing attention to these issues as well as Chairman Hurd (R-TX) for holding a public hearing today on political advertising laws and regulations to facilitate a thoughtful discussion on disclosure policy. We look forward to engaging with Members of Congress and other key stakeholders on these issues as the legislative process continues.

 

*“Electioneering Advertisements” Definition

Twitter is basing our definition of “electioneering” ads on the FEC’s existing definition: this means ads that refer to a clearly identified candidate (or party associated with that candidate) for any elected office, are targeted to the relevant electorate for that federal candidate and are publicly distributed within 30 days of a primary election or 60 days of a general election. This policy will also apply to ads on our platform that run at any time and expressly advocate for a clearly identified political candidate.

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@brucefalck

Bruce Falck

‎@brucefalck‎

GM Revenue Product and Engineering, Twitter

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