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Meta allowing 2020 election denialism in political ads

The Meta logo is seen at the Vivatech show in Paris on June 14, 2023. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH-TV) — Meta will allow political ads on its social media sites that question the outcome of the 2020 presidential election.

The policy means that Meta, the parent company of Facebook and Instagram, could profit from ads that promote false claims about the 2020 election that was won by President Joe Biden.

Dozens of lawsuits were filed in the wake of the election to challenge the results. Those lawsuits were dismissed at the state and federal levels for a lack of evidence proving widespread election fraud.

While Meta’s new policy will allow ads claiming past elections were rigged, it will prohibit ads that “call into question the legitimacy of an upcoming or ongoing election.”

The change was part of a year-old update to the company policy that has not been widely reported.

Meta says the policy change happened in the runup to last year’s midterm elections. The company said it would stop ads targeting people in the United States, Brazil, Israel, and Italy that discouraged people from voting, called into question upcoming or ongoing elections or prematurely claimed an election victory.

Meta is not the only social media company with changes to their political advertisement policies this year.

Another social media provider, X, formerly Twitter, said earlier this year that it would once again allow political advertisements, lifting an earlier ban.