In an effort to further combat fake news and political campaign interference, Facebook has announced they are planning to utilize the U.S. postal system in order to verify the locations and identities of those who are seeking to purchase some types of political advertising.
The verification process will be required for any advertising that mentions a specific candidate running for federal office. As of right now, there is no mention of this being required for issue-based political ads. While it may not solve everything, it certainly has the potential to help. Facebook intends to mail a postcard with a verification code to a physical address in order to verify the identities and location of those who are purchasing ads.
In a Facebook Newsroom update they noted that many political ads from the 2016 season violated their policies because they came from inauthentic accounts. During this update they stated “We’re updating our policies to require more thorough documentation from advertisers who want to run US federal election-related ads. Potential advertisers will have to confirm the business or organization they represent before they can buy ads.”
While Facebook has not given an exact date as to when they plan to roll out this process, they have said it will happen prior to this year’s mid-term congressional elections in November.
As marketers and Facebook advertisers, this is something we will pay close attention to in the coming months to see what (if any) impact it may have on our ads. To learn more about Facebook and our advertising experts, contact us today!