The Twitter Inc. logo is displayed on an Apple Inc. iPhone in this arranged photograph taken in the Brooklyn Borough of New York, U.S. (Photographer: Alex Flynn/Bloomberg)  

Twitter Expands Rules for Issue Ads on Abortion, Civil Rights

(Bloomberg) -- Twitter Inc. will require that advertisers advocating for public policy issues verify their identity and location, in an effort to increase transparency and prevent foreign meddling on its service ahead of the U.S. midterm elections.

The new policy will affect “legislative issues of national importance,” including abortion, civil rights and immigration, Twitter said Thursday in a blog post. Advertisers on those topics must apply for certification and their purchases will be labeled as “issue” ads in Twitter users’ timelines, similar to the rules announced in May for ads from political candidates. The company said those on the social-media platform will be able to see what organization is promoting the ads and access more information.

The disclosure requirements come a week before Twitter Chief Executive Officer Jack Dorsey is scheduled to testify in front of Congress about foreign manipulation and the way the company supervises content on its platform. Twitter is trying to curb malicious actors from spreading propaganda and manipulating conversation.

Issue ads and political campaign ads will be listed in the company’s transparency center that will detail billing information, ad spending and targeting information. The new rules aren’t intended to apply to news outlets that report about the topics and run ads on Twitter, the company said.

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