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Worried about ‘civil unrest,’ Mark Zuckerberg explains Facebook’s temporary political ad ban

Facebook announced this morning that it won’t accept any new political ads, or issue new ones, for its platform a week before the 2020 election.

The concern is that the ads will make claims about politicians or issues without enough time for journalists, fact-checkers, and others to scrutinize them.

“The US elections are just two months away, and with COVID-19 affecting communities across the country, I’m concerned about the challenges people could face when voting,” Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg wrote in a blog post. “I’m also worried that with our nation so divided and election results potentially taking days or even weeks to be finalized, there could be an increased risk of civil unrest across the country.”

Ads that were already running can remain and advertisers can “adjust the targeting,” he added.

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