Twitter halts blocks on French government ad campaign

Twitter will allow French government ads encouraging voting after initially blocking them under a law intended to crack down on fake news, according to The Associated Press.

The French government had planned to encourage voter registration and participation in the May 26 European parliamentary elections through the #OuiJeVote (“Yes I vote”) campaign using sponsored tweets.

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However, Twitter turned down the ads, saying they did not meet the requirements of French transparency laws.

Those laws, implemented last year, mandate that social platforms require disclosure of the sponsor of any political ads in the three months before an election, as well as how much they spent, according to the AP.

Twitter said it has clarified the policy in the interest of protecting “the integrity of conversations” relating to the elections, the company’s French office said in a tweet.

 

The government said the changes were welcome but that the platform needs to do more to combat misinformation.

“Other platforms have already put in place these simple obligations of transparency, showing their technical feasibility,” France’s interior, culture and digital affairs ministries said in a statement, according to the AP. “Some have even made the choice to apply this transparency rule in other countries.”

The government did not identify any of the other countries or other platforms.