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Facebook Takes Down Trump Campaign Ad In Violation Of 'Census Interference Policy'

Facebook Inc. on Thursday removed an advertisement from President Donald Trump's reelection campaign that violated the social media platform's policies, according to Reuters. 

Benzinga · 03/06/2020 03:37

Facebook Inc. on Thursday removed an advertisement from President Donald Trump's reelection campaign that violated the social media platform's policies, according to Reuters

Trump Ad Violates Policy On Census 

The ad posted by the Trump Make America Great Again Committee, was titled "RESPOND NOW: Official Congressional District Census," Reuters said. 

"We need Patriotic Americans like YOU to respond to this census, so we can develop a winning strategy for YOUR STATE," the ad said. 

"Your participating in this national effort will provide us with the detailed data we need for YOUR CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT."

The Facebook users who clicked the ad were taken to the political committee's website, where they were first asked to fill out a survey and ultimately for donations.

In a statement to Reuters, Facebook spokesperson Andy Stone said the ad was removed for violating Facebook's policy on publishing fake or misleading information regarding the official United States Census.

"There are policies in place to prevent confusion around the official U.S Census and this is an example of those being enforced," Stone said.

Pelosi Says Facebook's Profit Motive Shouldn't Outweigh Census 

Facebook had announced a "census interference policy" that would ban both regular posts on the social media platform and paid ads that are aimed at reducing census participation.

The social media giant has been facing increased scrutiny over its actions regarding political ads, as the company has resisted calls for regulating political ads on its platform, citing free speech concerns.

Ahead of Facebook's decision to remove the ad, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi criticized the company for letting the misleading it run in the first place.

"I know the profit motive is their business model. But it should not come at the cost of counting who is in our country, so that we can provide the services and the rest," Pelosi said at a press conference, as reported by Reuters.

Facebook Price Action

Facebook's shares closed 3.44% lower at $185.17 on Thursday.