Facebook said that on Tuesday it is introducing a new global policy that prohibits advertisements that discourage people from getting vaccinated. The company previously had a policy against vaccine hoaxes that was publicly recognized by global health organizations.
“If an ad clearly discourages anyone from getting vaccinated, we will reject it,” a blog post on Tuesday said, with the company’s head, Kang-Jing Jin, and director of product management, Rob Leathern .
It was previously hesitant to remove the social networks of problematic content amid a series of policy changes announced by the company due to the new ban. This includes a ban on Holocaust denials announced earlier this week, a ban on pages and groups ignoring the QAnon conspiracy theory last week, a temporary ban on political ads after the November 3 US election, on demand any month Last month’s ban. The US election results, and last month to stop the spread of groups on its social networks, have a decision that focuses on giving health advice to users.
Facebook will still allow advertisements that vaccinate against government policies, including the Kovid-19 vaccine.
For example, Facebook said it would allow ads like a state representative candidate in Virginia in August, which included language “STOP FORCED CORONAVIRUS VACCINATIONS! … all drugs are at risk, and we believe that vaccinations Discuss alone before! It is both premature and dangerous, without releasing it, without knowing what the long-term side effects are. “
Advertisement run by Isaiah Knight on Facebook.
However, advertisements that explicitly discourage vaccines – including portraying them as ineffective or unsafe, among other things – will be banned.
“If an advertisement that advocates for / against the law or the government’s policies clearly discourages a vaccine,” it would be rejected, “a spokesperson wrote CNBC.” This includes the use of vaccines, Depicted as ineffective, unsafe, or unhealthy, describing diseases as vaccines made to the ingredients of the vaccines as harmless or harmful or fatal. ”
The blog post also outlined general information about the flu vaccine using its “preventive health” tool and the platform’s plans to direct people to receive it.
It also said that it is working with the World Health Organization and UNICEF on “public health messaging campaigns to increase vaccination rates.”
However, at least one researcher suggested that Facebook’s move is too short, too late.
“I think a lot of vaccine hesitation researchers know that Facebook has the potential to promote vaccine hesitation,” said Colina Koltai, a vaccine researcher at the Center for Informed Public at the University of Washington.
“This is a step in the right direction, but there is still a lot of work to be done to correct the damage already done.” In addition, Coltai reported that there is still a lot of vaccine-hesitant material in groups and pages.
– CNBC’s Christina Farr contributed to this report.