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Facebook Is Blocking Foreign Ads Relating to Ireland's Abortion Referendum

Facebook Is Blocking Foreign Ads Relating to Ireland's Abortion Referendum

He said a number of No groups had earmarked significant spending on the platform ahead of the referendum on 25 May to reach voters, and that it was a legitimate means of doing so.

This will not limit or omit any content found in Google searches and will focus on the ads. The company will put a moratorium on all referendum-related advertising on its Google search pages as well as on YouTube in an effort to ensure advertising on its site doesn't tip the vote on the controversial topic.

Before Facebook started to block advertising related to the referendum, but which does not belong to Irish advertisers.

This follows a decision made by social media giant Facebook to ban all ads on its platform related to the referendum that are produced by advertisers based outside of Ireland.

Google explicitly linked the new changes to those efforts, though it did not make clear whether the change was the result of any particular ad.




Both companies claimed they are concerned about foreign groups influencing the election through ads on their platforms. Although Irish law bans foreign donations to political campaigns, there had been concerns that overseas campaigners were still able to spend potentially unlimited sums buying adverts targeting Irish voters.

'Fake news has already had a corrosive impact on the referendum debate on social media, ' he said, in reference to the impact of misinformation on the Brexit vote and the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

Meanwhile, the leader of Renua Ireland, the only political party to campaign for the retention of the Eighth Amendment, has noted that the decisions by Facebook and Google have occurred in "the dying weeks of the campaign".

The news comes amid increasing focus on how online ads were used in campaigns like the Brexit referendum or the 2016 United States election. Domestic campaigners and groups located in Ireland are still permitted to advertise about the campaign on Facebook at the time of writing.

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