Twitter to ban political advertising: “political message reach should be earned, not bought”

The announcement comes from CEO Jack Dorsey

Twitter has announced that it’s set to ban all political advertising.

Taking to the website, CEO Jack Dorsey tweeted the news, along with a number of reasons behind the decision.

“We’ve made the decision to stop all political advertising on Twitter globally,” he began. “We believe political message reach should be earned, not bought.”


“A political message earns reach when people decide to follow an account or retweet,” Dorsey continued. “Paying for reach removes that decision, forcing highly optimized and targeted political messages on people. We believe this decision should not be compromised by money.”

“While internet advertising is incredibly powerful and very effective for commercial advertisers, that power brings significant risks to politics, where it can be used to influence votes to affect the lives of millions.”

He continued: “Internet political ads present entirely new challenges to civic discourse: machine learning-based optimization of messaging and micro-targeting, unchecked misleading information, and deep fakes. All at increasing velocity, sophistication, and overwhelming scale.”

Ending his thread of tweets, Dorsey said: “This isn’t about free expression. This is about paying for reach. And paying to increase the reach of political speech has significant ramifications that today’s democratic infrastructure may not be prepared to handle. It’s worth stepping back in order to address.”


It’s revealed in the tweet thread that political advertising will be banned on Twitter by November 22, with full details of the new proposal to precede that, arriving on November 15.

The news follows Facebook chief Mark Zuckerburg recently ruling out banning political advertising on the social network.

“We’re at another crossroads,” he said in a speech in Washington DC last week. “We can either continue to stand for free expression, understanding its messiness but believing that the long journey towards greater progress requires confronting ideas that challenge us. Or we can decide that the cost is simply temporary.”