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Twitter to Label Issue Ads Ahead of US Elections, Begin Testing Threaded Replies & Online Status Indicators

In a bid to ensure better transparency for advertising on their platform, Twitter has announced the next phase of their continued effort that include a new US-specific Issue Ads Policy guidelines and certification process.

With these new guidelines, advertisers will have to adhere to certain rules which dictate how they must present themselves on Twitter. This new policy will impact specifically, “ads that refer to an election or a clearly identified candidate,” or “ads that advocate for legislative issues of national importance,” twitter said.

The ads, including on legislative issues of national importance, such as “abortion, civil rights, climate change, guns, healthcare, immigration, national & social security, taxes & trade” will be labeled as issue ads. This list will evolve over time, the company said.

“Similar to political campaigning ads, issue ads will be specifically labeled as such within the timeline so that people will be able to clearly see who is promoting the ads and easily access more information.”

And as part of the new certification process, Twitter now require advertisers to verify their identity and prove their location within the U.S. Advertisers that promote ads that fall under this policy can apply for certification.

News publishers/organizations that meet the specific requirement can also seek for exemption from this policy by applying here.

Promoted tweets, on the other hand, will mandate the disclosure of the organization that paid for it.

A screenshot below shows the promoted content that falls under this policy:

Promoted Content Falls Under Twitters Issue Ads Policy

These efforts are directed to ensure to provide the public with more transparency into ads prior to the midterm elections in the US this fall. These ads aim to influence people’s stance on issues that may influence election outcomes.

In addition to this new policy and certification, Twitter also created a new Ads Transparency Center, which will offer details about political campaigning ads, including billing information, ad spend, and targeting information.

Twitter Ads Transparency Center

This new issue ads policy will come into enforcement beginning of September 30th, 2018, in the US.

After, this date any ads from uncertified advertisers will not go live on the platform until the advertiser becomes certified.

In other news, Twitter provided a sneak peek at the two upcoming changes that include threaded comment and an ability to see when someone is online.

The tweet revealed these changes are part of their effort to make Twitter more conversational. “We’ve been playing with some rough features to make it feel more conversational here. presence and reply threading. still early and iterating on these ideas. thoughts?,” wrote Sara Haider, Twitter’s director of product management.

Haider also shared two screenshots that showed off these two new features:

Twitter Threaded Comments Twitter Who is Online


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