Facebook Gives Kenyan Users Special Rights over Politicians

  • File Image of Facebook Logo
    File Image of Facebook Logo
    Facebook
  • Kenyans on Facebook will now have the option of fewer political advertisements appearing on their Facebook feed.  following an initiative by the service provider.

    Facebook, on March 5, 2021, announced the expansion of two initiatives focused on increasing transparency and controls on social issues, electoral, and political ads in Kenya. 

    The initiative aims at stimulating transparency ahead of the general elections in 2022. Ethiopia had also been included in the initiative with their elections slated for May 2021.

    A screenshot of the enabled feature on the Facebook application
    A screenshot of the enabled feature on the Facebook application
    File

    “When people use this control, they’ll no longer see ads that run with a “Paid for by” disclaimer”. Political ads play an important role in every election. The feedback received from Facebook users was that they wanted the option to see fewer of these on their Facebook and Instagram feeds,” said Kojo Boakye, Facebook Policy Director for Africa.

    The social network seeks to empower an average of seven million users in Kenya with control over the ads they view. The feature was implemented in the US and Brazil and is now in 98 additional countries. It seeks to include 20 more countries.

    To enable the social issue, electoral, and political ads controls, people can adjust their ad topic preferences:

    One will have to visit Ad Preferences then click Ad Topics, under the list of Ad Topics, there's a list of topics including Social Issues, Elections, or Politics. Across from Social Issues, Elections or Politics, you'll be required to click 'See Fewer'.

    "Previously, advertisers in these countries may have chosen to use these tools. Now, they will be required to go through the authorization process and place "Paid for by" disclaimers on their ads.

    "This includes any person creating, modifying, publishing or pausing ads that reference political figures, political parties or elections (including “get out the vote” campaigns). Ads will also be entered into Facebook’s Ad Library for seven years," said the social network. 

    A silhouette image of people using the Facebook application.
    A silhouette image of people using the Facebook application.
    File