Concerned about the abuse of political ads to undermine elections, the European Union announced on Thursday plans to help people better understand when they are watching such ads online and who is responsible for them. Did.
Proposals aimed at ensuring fair and transparent polls and referendums use sensitive personal data such as ethnic origin, religious beliefs, and sexual orientation without the permission of the public. It also bans political targeting and amplification techniques used to reach a larger audience.
Vice-Chairman Bella Jouroba of the European Commission said digital advertising for political purposes is becoming an unconfirmed competition in a dirty and opaque way. Countless data analytics and carriers are using our data every day to find the best way to buy something, vote for someone, or persuade them not to vote at all. “
She said people had to know why they were watching the ad, who paid it, how much, and which micro-targeting criteria were used. The new technology should be a tool for liberation, not for operation. “
The Commission, the EU’s governing body, expects 27 Member States and the European Parliament to discuss and approve national legislative proposals by 2023 in time for the next year’s elections across Europe.
Companies like Facebook and Google, the two biggest players in the digital advertising industry, will be fined if they don’t comply.
Faced with intense criticism of the lack of transparency in political advertising, Facebook welcomed the move.
We have long called for EU-wide regulation of political advertising, and we are pleased that the Commission’s proposal addresses some of the more difficult issues, especially with regard to cross-border advertising. .. statement.
Google said in a blog post that it supported the proposal and recommended that the Commission clearly define political advertising and clarify the tech platform and advertiser responsibilities while keeping the rules flexible.
Twitter, which banned all political ads in 2019, believes that political reach should be earned rather than bought, “he said, limiting micro-targeting from other types of ads, such as cause-based ads. And said it was deleted.
The EU plan should clearly label political ads, prominently display the sponsor’s name, and display a transparency notice explaining where the cost of the ad and its payments came from. .. The material requires a relevant vote or a direct link to the vote.
Information must be available on why individuals or groups of people are targeted for advertising, and what amplification tools are used to help sponsors reach a larger audience. .. If such criteria are not met, advertising will be banned.
Jourova told reporters that sensitive data that people decide to share with friends on social media cannot be used to target them for political purposes. She said companies like Facebook can publicly say who they are targeting, why and how they are targeting, or why they can’t.
This system is monitored by the respective data protection authorities of EU member states. National authorities must impose effective, proportional and persuasive fines for violating the rules.
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