Facebook bans political campaigns from using its new AI-powered ad tools

In an effort to curb political misinformation, political advertisers on Facebook won't be able to use all of the site's ad features.
Written by Artie Beaty, Contributing Writer
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While AI is creeping into just about every aspect of our lives, there's one place it won't be – Facebook political advertisements.

From presidential campaigns to local elections, political misinformation has been rampant over the past few years – and AI only stands to make matters worse. That's why Meta is taking steps to decrease the deluge.

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In a statement today, Meta announced that political campaigns will not have access to the site's generative AI advertising tools. 

"As we continue to test new Generative AI ads creation tools in Ads Manager," the statement said, "advertisers running campaigns that qualify as ads for Housing, Employment or Credit or Social Issues, Elections, or Politics, or related to Health, Pharmaceuticals or Financial Services aren't currently permitted to use these Generative AI features."  

While the new policy isn't present in the site's advertising standards (which do actually prohibit ads including information that has been debunked by fact checkers), it's expected to be added very soon.

This policy update comes just a month after Facebook announced an expansion of its AI-powered ad tools that can make changes to images, create backgrounds, write copy, and more -- all on the fly. The tool is expected to be available to all advertisers by 2024.

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The announcement also comes not long after Meta blocked its AI virtual assistant from creating images of public figures and committed to watermarking content generated by AI to ensure it doesn't spread false information.

In the wake of the success of ChatGPT and other AI programs, social media companies are racing to include generative AI in their products. Meta's move marks the first real safety guideline for AI on social media to be introduced, making it a pretty important decision. Google introduced a similar tool last week, and in a similar fashion, their product actually prohibits political keywords from being used as a prompt.

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