Somewhere in the range of 10 million individuals in the United States saw politically disruptive advertisements on Facebook during the recent election cycle, which the organization said were placed by Russia in previous months. Facebook, which had not given an estimate, announced that it used modeling tools to evaluate how many individuals saw at least one of the 3,000 promotions. It also said that 44 percent of the promotions were seen before the November 2016 election, and that 56 percent were seen a short time later.
“In reviewing the ad buys, we have found approximately $100,000 in ad spending from June of 2015 to May of 2017 associated with roughly 3,000 ads that were connected to about 470 inauthentic accounts and pages in violation of our policies,” Facebook Chief Security Officer Alex Stamos wrote at the time.
CEO Mark Zuckerberg has indicated the organization intends to stop governments from hijacking its system. Facebook said in another statement that it wanted to enlist more individuals to survey promotions and guarantee they meet its terms, as a feature to discourage Russia and different nations from using the stage to meddle in decisions. “We are hiring 1,000 more people to our global ads review teams,” Tom Channick, corporate communications manager at Facebook,
The latest company statement said that about 25 percent of the ads were never shown to anyone. “That’s because advertising auctions are designed so that ads reach people based on relevance, and certain ads may not reach anyone as a result,” Elliot Schrage, Facebook’s vice president of policy and communications, said in the statement.
While criticizing the ad buyers for using fake accounts, Schrage said many of the ads did not violate Facebook’s content policies, and could have remained if bought using real accounts. “While we may not always agree with the positions of those who would speak on issues here, we believe in their right to do so – just as we believe in the right of Americans to express opinions on issues in other countries,” he wrote.
The hiring of 1,000 new workers is the second time this year that Facebook has reacted to an emergency by declaring a contracting binge. In May, it said it would enlist 3,000 more individuals to accelerate the removal of recordings about homicide, suicide, and other vulgar acts that stunned clients.