Facebook has announced the expansion of two initiatives focused on increasing transparency and controls on social issues, electoral, and political ads. These initiatives will be expanded to more countries around the world, including Kenya and Ethiopia, who are facing elections this May and 2022 respectively.

The first initiative is focused on empowering people to have more control over the ads they see on their feeds. This entails the creation of controls that enable people to see fewer social issues, electoral, and political ads.

Commenting on the new feature, Facebook’s Policy Director, Africa Kojo Boakye said, “When people use this control, they’ll no longer see ads that run with a Paid for by disclaimer. Political ads play an important role in every election. The feedback received from Facebook users was that they wanted the option to see fewer of these on their Facebook and Instagram feeds.”

To enable the social issue, electoral, and political ads controls, people can adjust their ad topic preferences:

  • Visit Ad Preferences then click Ad Topics.
  • Under the list of Ad Topics, you’ll see a list of topics including Social Issues, Elections or Politics.
  • Across from Social Issues, Elections or Politics, click See Fewer.

Additionally, Facebook is expanding the enforcement of social issues, electoral, and political ads to 20 additional countries. Previously, advertisers in these countries may have chosen to use these tools. However, now advertisers will be required to go through the authorization process and place Paid for by disclaimers on their ads.

This includes any person creating, modifying, publishing or pausing ads that reference political figures, political parties or elections (including get out the vote campaigns). Ads will also be entered into Facebook’s Ad Library for seven years.