After a series of Elizabeth Warren’s Facebook ads calling for the breakup of big tech companies were pulled from Facebook, the social media service has restored the ads, saying they were pulled in the first place because of a misuse of the Facebook logo.
Curious why I think FB has too much power? Let's start with their ability to shut down a debate over whether FB has too much power. Thanks for restoring my posts. But I want a social media marketplace that isn't dominated by a single censor. #BreakUpBigTech https://t.co/UPS6dozOxn
— Elizabeth Warren (@ewarren) March 11, 2019
The ads were taken down Monday but restored later that night, after a tizzy of online backlash from the 2020 hopeful and her supporters. The company said it was bringing them back in the spirit of “allowing robust debate.”
Spokesperson Andy Stone said in a statement that the ads were removed not in a censorship move, but because of their unauthorized use of the Facebook logo. According to Facebook’s advertising policies, advertisers can only “make limited reference to ‘Facebook’ or ‘Instagram’ in ad text.” But Facebook, or its many associated companies, such as Instagram or Whatsapp, cannot be “the most distinctive or prominent feature of the creative.”
Facebook, Amazon, and Google have vast power over our economy and democracy. They’ve bulldozed competition and tilted the playing field in their favor. Time to break up these companies so they don’t have so much power over everyone else. #BreakUpBigTech https://t.co/2rWT0wJ8vD
— Elizabeth Warren (@ewarren) March 8, 2019
Warren unveiled her proposal to break up big tech on Friday, opting to debut it on Medium rather than Instagram Live this time. Four ads went up on Facebook that same day and linked to a petition on her website calling for digital signatures in support of breaking up media technology conglomerates Amazon, Google, and Facebook.
Politico reported on the removal, which may have done more to advance Warren’s point than any sleek graphic her team could come up with ever could.
“Three companies have vast power over our economy and our democracy. Facebook, Amazon, and Google,” the ads say.”We all use them. But in their rise to power, they’ve bulldozed competition, used our private information for profit, and tilted the playing field in their favor.”
The Facebook advertisements cost under $100 each and circulated among targeted audiences, Politico reports.
Other advertisements placed on the site by Warren for President that avoided use of the Facebook logo were not taken down.
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