Facebook halts political ads by brands (including P&G) for lacking 'paid for by' label

Facebook is taking a strong stance on labelling, having stopped a Procter & Gamble ad last week from running on its platform because it ran without a "Paid for by" label.

According to its new political ad archive, Facebook said it determined that the ad contained political content after it began running and required the paid label. As such, the ad was removed. The ad featured P&G's commitment to LGBT+ inclusion which began 25 years ago.

"Today, we continue to learn, grow and create meaningful change in our company and community," the caption wrote, along with the hashtags #LoveOverBias and #Pride2018. Approximately US$5k to US$10k was spent on the ad for the scheduled period of 22 June to 26 June, which saw approximately 200k to 500k impressions. Most of the viewers were between 18 to 34 year olds.

In a statement to Marketing, Facebook's spokesperson said the aim of this policy and authorisation process is increased authenticity for political ads on Facebook. "It won't be perfect to start—we'll learn and evolve over time–but we think the good far outweighs the bad," the spokesperson added.

This comes shortly after Facebook said in a blog post in June that it is taking "significant steps" to bring more transparency to ads and Pages, by providing consumers with information about organisations and the ads they are running. The blog post added that this will mean increased accountability for advertisers, helping to prevent abuse on Facebook.

Users can now see ads age Page is running across Facebook, Instagram, Messenger even though the ads aren't being targeted at them. Additionally, users can also learn more about Pages such as recent name changes and the date the Page was created, even if they do not advertise.

In October last year, Facebook said only authorised advertisers will be able to run electoral ads on Facebook on Instagram. In April 2018, it extended the requirement to anyone who wants to show "issue ads", such as political topics being debated across the country.

P&G was not the only brand to have been affected. According to AdAge, Facebook initially removed Walmart's ad as it did not have the required "Paid for by" disclosure. The ad talked about Walmart's commitment