In this day and age, the online world has its way of influencing people’s decisions including what to wear, where to eat, and who to possibly vote for. But Google announced that it will not accept political advertisements in the Philippines during the campaign and silence periods for the country’s 2022 elections.
In the tech giant’s advisory, it noted that the policy will apply to “election ads bought through Google Ads, Display and Video 360 and shopping platforms that advertisers intend to place on Google, YouTube and partner properties.” Affected advertisers will receive a notification from Google about the policy update.
Google won’t promote any political content during the campaign period for the upcoming national and local elections that will run between February 8 to May 9, 2022. However, it will only take effect at those times, meaning political ads can still operate before the mentioned dates.
The release also stated, ‘Google is focusing its efforts and resources on upcoming election-related initiatives which aim to help people access useful and accurate information via product features and media literacy programs, encourage participation in the voting process, and help protect the integrity of the elections.’
The move comes at a time where social media platforms are pressured over how they run their political ads during the United States presidential election last 2020. Google also paused political-related ads such as Canada’s federal election in 2019 and before an election in Singapore in 2020.
According to Reuters, social media platforms have grown into “political battlegrounds” in the Southeast Asian nation. Online platforms like Facebook are said to help strengthen President Rodrigo Duterte’s support base, with analysts considering them as an effective tool in his election success in 2016.