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20th Jul 2018

Facebook Will Publish Data On Eighth Referendum Ads


Facebook has agreed to hand over the majority of the data relating to advertisements during the Eighth Amendment referendum campaigns.

The social media giant had been refusing to share the data up to now, but due to political pressure and a Private Members’ Bill in front of the Dáil, which would mean these kinds of ads would have to be traceable, it has agreed to do so.

According to the Irish Times, the data, which will reveal the extent of online campaigning in Ireland, is to be shared with the Geary Institute in UCD which is working in partnership with the voluntary Transparent Referendum Initiative.

Facebook will share a list of advertisers and aggregate data for the total spending with UCD.

However, the tech company said it will only be able to provide 95% of the data.

This comes on the back of claims that the No side was advertising heavily online with concerns from the Yes campaigns that this could influence the vote which resulted in Facebook banning all foreign-funded ads for the remainder of the campaign.

Facebook has agreed to share a list of pages associated with both sides and the advertising and spending associated with these groups.

They will also hand over a list of ads that were rejected following the ban on foreign ads.

It will be interesting to see how this unfolds.

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