SAN FRANCISCO (AP) – Facebook has decided to allow a type of paid political message that had sidestepped many of the social network’s rules governing political ads.
Its policy change Friday comes days after presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg exploited a loophole to run such messages promoting his campaign among younger people. Until Friday, Facebook tried to deter the use of such posts as political messages. But the Bloomberg campaign took the unconventional step of paying social media influencers – individuals with huge followings – to post Bloomberg memes using their Instagram accounts.
That effort skirted many of the rules that tech companies have imposed on political ads to safeguard U.S. elections.