Google to block political ads for 2022 Philippine elections

Unsplash/Solen Feyissa

Google is trying to limit misinformation during the 2022 Philippine elections by banning advertisers from running political ads during the campaign and silence periods of the upcoming polls.

In a press release sent to news outlets on Wednesday, December 1, the California giant said that they will not run advertisements for or against any political party or candidate in the country from the start of the campaign season on February 8, 2022, until the Election Day on May 9, 2022.

Google said the policy will apply to political ads “purchased through Google AdsDisplay and Video 360, and Shopping platforms that advertisers intend to place on Google, YouTube, and partner properties.”

“Google is focusing its efforts and resources on upcoming election-related initiatives which aim to help people access useful and accurate information via product features and media literacy programs, encourage participation in the voting process, and help protect the integrity of the elections,” it wrote on the release.

This is not the first time the tech company is pausing election-related ads on its platforms, as it implemented the same policy during the election and campaign period in Canada in 2019, as well as Singapore and the U.S. in 2020.

Facebook took similar steps in the U.S. that year to prevent former President Donald Trump and current President Joe Biden from prematurely claiming victory and spreading confusion about the results at that time. Twitter, meanwhile, strictly prohibits the promotion of political content since 2019, in the belief that “political message reach should be earned, not bought.”

Google noted that Philippine advertisers can still run political ads on its platforms prior to the implementation of the policy during the elections’ campaign and silence periods.

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