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Understanding Facebook's Political Ad Ownership

Published on: November 17 2023 by Nativ3 — Minneapolis HQ

Understanding Facebook's Political Ad Ownership

Table of Contents:

  1. Introduction
  2. The Process of Political Authorization on Facebook 2.1. Defining Political Causes 2.2. Steps for Political Authorization 2.3. Changes in Facebook's Verification Process
  3. The Importance of Transparency in Political Advertising
  4. The New Level of Verification for Political Advertisers 4.1. Verified Organizations 4.2. The Role of Business Manager 4.3. Assigning a Page Owner
  5. Recommendations for Compliance 5.1. Verifying Facebook Business Manager 5.2. Ensuring Proper Legal Entity 5.3. Starting the Verification Process
  6. Potential Challenges and Considerations 6.1. Personal Information Privacy 6.2. Managing Ads for Candidates or Causes 6.3. Transparency Measures in 2020
  7. Conclusion

The New Level of Verification for Political Advertisers

In recent years, Facebook has made efforts to be more transparent with its users regarding political advertising. As part of this endeavor, the social media giant has introduced another level of verification and transparency for political advertisers. For individuals and organizations running political ads on Facebook and Instagram, this means additional steps to ensure compliance and legitimacy.

The process of political authorization on Facebook can be quite stringent. To run political ads, one must first go through the process of getting politically authorized. This involves submitting identification, verifying the legitimacy of the ad account, and confirming the political candidacy or cause. However, as of February 8th, 2020, Facebook has implemented a new requirement – a verified organization must be running paid Facebook marketing campaigns if they are related to politics.

A verified organization is one that has gone through Facebook's verification process and has confirmed ownership of the page. This process is managed through Business Manager, a useful tool for managing multiple pages and ad accounts in one centralized location. To become a verified organization, it is necessary to cross-reference the business with a Secretary of State record or another official documentation proving the existence of the enterprise.

Previously, it was possible to run political ads using a personal ad account and verifying the candidate or cause's information on the page itself. However, with the new level of verification, it is now required to assign a page owner, which must be a verified organization. Failure to do so will result in the default display of personal information, such as the ad creator's name and phone number.

To ensure compliance with these changes, there are several recommendations to follow. First, verify the Facebook Business Manager and ensure that each candidate or cause has their own verified business manager. Secondly, advise clients to have an EIN number or another legal entity for verification purposes. It is also crucial to start the verification process as soon as possible, as it may take up to two weeks to complete.

There are potential challenges and considerations to keep in mind when navigating these changes. Personal information privacy is a concern, as having personal information displayed publicly can lead to unwanted attention or backlash. Additionally, managing ads for candidates or causes may require careful consideration, as the ad may be attributed to the business manager's verified organization. Facebook is continuously rolling out transparency measures, which may expose more information in the future.

In conclusion, the new level of verification for political advertisers on Facebook is aimed at increasing transparency and accountability in political advertising. By following the recommended steps and being proactive in compliance, advertisers can protect themselves and their clients while effectively running political ads on social media platforms.

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