Facebook to Allow Users to Turn Off Political Ads

The social media platform has faced criticism for allowing politicians to run ads with false or misleading info

Don't want to see political ads? You don't have to anymore.
SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Mark Zuckerberg knows that some of you just want this nightmare of an election to be over, so he’s made the decision to let you turn off political ads on Facebook.

“For those of you who’ve already made up your minds and just want the election to be over, we hear you — so we’re also introducing the ability to turn off seeing political ads,” the Facebook CEO wrote in an op-ed published on USA Today. “We’ll still remind you to vote.”

The social media platform has been the subject of much criticism in recent months for its policy that allows politicians to run political ads containing false or misleading information. The move to let users block political ads follows an announcement from Facebook back in January stating that the platform would give users more control over political ads, allowing them to limit how often they see ads based on how an advertiser constructed its list of targeted users.

Facebook has received criticism for not taking notes from other social media platforms that have banned political ads outright, like Twitter.

“Ultimately, we don’t think decisions about political ads should be made by private companies, which is why we are arguing for regulation that would apply across the industry,” Facebook’s director of product management Rob Leathern wrote said in January.

The new ad-blocking feature Zuckerberg announced this week will allow users to block political ads altogether, as well as electoral and social issue ads from political candidates, Super PACs and other paid organizations.

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