Google to block election ads after US presidential polls

Google has said it will temporarily restrict all advertisers from running political ads following the US presidential elections on its platform.

In an email to advertisers accessed by Axios on Friday, the company the new rule will not only apply to ads about the presidential election but also state and local contests.

“The policy, which is intended to block all ads related to the election, will apply to all ads running through Google’s ad-serving platforms, including Google Ads, DV360, YouTube, and AdX Authorized Buyer,” the email read.

The restriction could last a week or more, according to a Google spokesperson.

Big Tech platforms are under tremendous pressure to address misinformation on their platforms before the presidential election that falls on November 3.

The Google ban will target ads that are explicitly election-related.

Google considers any ad an election-related ad if it mentions a current state or federal office holder or candidate, political party, or ballot measure.

The company also said there will be delays in the ad approval process.

Google told advertisers they should expect up to 48 hours for ad creative approvals, “and we will not be able to expedite requests during that time given the volume.”

Not only Google, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said earlier this month that the platform will not accept new political ads in the week before the November 3 US presidential elections.

Facebook said that it will remove posts that claim that people will get Covid-19 if they take part in voting.

A link to authoritative information about coronavirus will be provided to posts that might use Covid-19 to discourage voting, Zuckerberg said.

Facebook said it will attach an informational label to content that seeks to delegitimise the outcome of the elections or discuss the legitimacy of voting methods.

Social media firms like Twitter and Pinterest have already banned political ads on the platform.

Facebook faced a lot of scrutiny from lawmakers in the US after it did not take enough measures to check attempts of foreign actors to interfere in the 2016 US presidential elections.