The TikTok platform bans paid political ads from influencers

By TechThop Team

Posted on: 18 Aug, 2022

With the United States midterm elections just a few weeks away, platforms such as Twitter have been announcing their plans to combat election misinformation. Now, TikTok has done the same.

As part of its 'commitment to election integrity,' TikTok issued a statement written by its Head of US Safety, Eric Han. As part of its plans to reduce election misinformation on its short-form video-sharing app, Han described TikTok's plans.

A new Election Center feature will be introduced, along with a focus on the app's existing ban on paid political ads. Han points out that the ban on political ads also prohibits paid sponsored political content created by TikTok influencers.

As part of its strategy against election misinformation, TikTok has launched an Election Center. By providing users with “authoritative information and sources in more than 45 languages, including English and Spanish”, TikTok will provide them with election-related content. 

The informational center will also include voting information from various organizations, including the Center for Democracy in Deaf America and the Federal Voting Assistance Program. Also available in-app are The Associated Press election results.

The TikTok spokesperson also reiterated that the platform already bans 'paid political advertising'. Additionally, Han noted that TikTok creators and influencers aren't allowed to promote political content.

The Creator Portal and TikTok will deliver educational content over the next few weeks, and we'll hold briefings for agencies and creators so the rules of the road are abundantly clear. Content that is paid for and not disclosed is promptly removed.'

The TikTok platform isn't the only one announcing measures to combat election misinformation. Meta did so recently with its plans for the 2022 U.S. midterm elections. Last week, Twitter announced updates to its election misinformation products.

A real problem for social media platforms is election-related misinformation. Facebook and Twitter are notorious for being breeding grounds for misinformation.

The U.S. midterm elections are an opportunity for these platforms to prove they've learned from their mistakes by implementing new policies and features. Whether or not any of these policies will reduce misinformation effectively remains to be seen.

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