September 21, 2020
Facebook posts from Trump, Biden get new voting information label

Facebook to limit political ads ahead of November election


Mark Zuckerberg

Claudia Cruz/CNET

This story is part of Elections 2020, CNET’s coverage of the run-up to voting in November.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Thursday outlined several steps the social media site is taking to encourage voting and fight misinformation ahead of the US elections in November. In addition to efforts already in place, Zuckerberg said Facebook will expand its voter suppression policies and block new political and issue ads during the final week of the campaign. 

In an interview with CBS This Morning about its election policies, Zuckerberg said Facebook will also add context to posts — including from President Donald Trump — that seek to broadly delegitimize mail-in voting or the outcome of the election. 

“Anyone who is saying that the election is going to be fraudulent, I think that’s problematic and I think additional context needs to be added to that,” Zuckerberg told CBS This Morning co-anchor Gayle King. “This will definitely apply to the president. Once this policy goes into place, it will apply to everyone equally.”

Misinformation on social networks has been a top concern since Russian trolls used Facebook and other sites to post content aimed at sowing discord among Americans during the 2016 US presidential election. Facebook has also been under fire for not sending posts from politicians to fact-checkers, while also fending off allegations that it censors speech from conservatives.

On Tuesday,  Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan announced they were are committing $300 million to support voting and election infrastructure in the US ahead of the November election

“I believe our democracy is strong enough to withstand this challenge and deliver a free and fair election — even if it takes time for every vote to be counted,” Zuckerberg wrote in his post on Thursday. “But it’s going to take a concerted effort by all of us — political parties and candidates, election authorities, the media and social networks, and ultimately voters as well — to live up to our responsibilities.”

More to come. 

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