FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Group of Global Media Groups Unite to Call on Facebook to Immediately Exempt News Content from its Political Ads Policy
June 11, 2018
Arlington, VA – Seven media organizations representing over 20,000 media publishers and professionals in over 120 countries around the world have come together to express concern over Facebook’s new advertising policy that labels quality news as political advocacy and includes such content in its political ad archive.
Through this most recent attempt to address vulnerabilities on the platform leading up to federal elections in the United States, Facebook will undermine journalism and its role as the fourth estate and legitimize anti-journalism narratives around the world. The groups are calling on Facebook to immediately exempt news organizations from this new policy.
The media organizations, which represent newspapers, television, magazines and digital natives who employ journalists across the world, today sent a letter strongly encouraging Facebook to exempt news organizations from its new policy to label and archive political advertising.
The organizations offer three broad recommendations as part of a process to exempt news content from the ad archive. While the recommendations in no way relieve Facebook of its responsibility for the problems created by their platform, they offer critical industry input to help identify reasonable, scalable solutions working through a coalition of associations who already spend their time thinking about these issues.
Quotes from Media Organizations:
News Media Alliance President & CEO David Chavern: “Facebook’s new policy to classify news content as political advocacy could do irreparable harm to the news media industry. We are collectively proposing a workable solution for all.”
Jason Kint, CEO, Digital Content Next: “Premium publishers and advertisers invest time and resources every day to build trust with audiences. Facebook continues to undermine the premium brands of publishers and advertisers alike with half-baked attempts to clean up its platform.”
Michael Golden, President, World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN-IFRA): “Facebook must recognize the value of journalism created by independent news media companies and respect the critical role journalism plays in supporting societies across the world.”
Alfredo Carbajal, ASNE President, managing editor of Al Día at The Dallas Morning News: “Equating legitimate fact-based news packages with political content will not only hurt independent watchdog journalism, but also confuse a society that is being bombarded with content created to advocate for ideological factions in detriment of the truth.”
Members of the News Media Alliance staff have contributed to this post.