Political advertising is coming under increased scrutiny as regulators push for greater transparency. While we support the need for legislation, we want to ensure commercial advertising remains unaffected.
Indeed, online political advertising has been facing increasing scrutiny over the last years and the European legislator intends to increase the transparency of electoral events and the influence of advertisements related to them, especially on social networks. The European Commission launched a proposal to regulate political advertising, introducing transparency obligations for marketers and strict limits on the use of sensitive personal information. Under the plans, a political advertisement will have to indicate that it is advertising intended for political purposes and reveal the donor, the political party behind the advertisement and the money spent on the campaign. Moreover, the platforms will need to enable users to report violations via easily accessible and user-friendly tools.
At this stage, we are concerned about the legal uncertainty the proposal generates as both the definition of a political actor is too vague and commercial advertising not sufficiently distinguished from political advertising. We are therefore advocating for a clearer set of rules which can be efficiently implemented while not harming the core activity of media and communication agencies. For more information, do not hesitate to read our Position Papers or to directly reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org!