Will Political Ads On Google Need To Include: 'This Ad Paid For By…
from the and-not-much-else dept
Lots of politicians have made use of Google for advertising via keyword-based text ads. However, a mayoral candidate in St. Petersburg, Florida recently ran into trouble when the Florida Elections Commission ordered him to take down his ads and pay a $250 fine for not including a “this ad paid for by…”-type disclaimer, despite the fact that the “required” text of the disclaimer is greater than the 68 characters that you can fit into a Google ad.
The link above goes on to talk about other similar situations — and notes that many of the local Elections Commissions making decisions on these things are made up of more elderly folks (often retired judges) who don’t have the greatest understanding of these new-fangled technology whatchamacallits. It seems like we’re going to go through an uncomfortable transition period as these Elections Commissions begin to understand how the web works, and the idea that pretty much anyone can create content online — rather than just the “professionals.” What would have happened, for instance, if it hadn’t been the candidate or his campaign that bought the ad in the first place… but a fan?