Democracy for sale in social media’s Wild West

Almost everyone on Facebook is being targeted by ads in the run-up to the referendum. Many are spreading ‘fake news’ and paid for by groups not based in Ireland, or groups about which nothing at all is known

6th May, 2018
An all-seeing eye: Facebook is being urged to suspend the sale of political ads until it can give full transparency Picture: PA

Supporters of Dublin GAA are being targeted for anti- abortion ads on Facebook, while those who like Brown Thomas are being targeted with ads to repeal the Eighth Amendment.

A sample of almost 600 Irish Facebook users has found nearly 500 ad campaigns running in their feeds relating to the forthcoming referendum – including a number from outside the country.

In many cases, users will not be aware that what they are viewing is paid advertising, as...

Subscribe from just €1 for the first month!

Exclusive offers:

All Digital Access + eReader

Trial

€1

Unlimited Access for 1 Month

Get basic

*New subscribers only

You can cancel any time.

Annual

€200

€149 For the 1st Year

Unlimited Access for 1 Year

You can cancel any time.

Quarterly

€55

€42

90 Day Pass

You can cancel any time.

2 Yearly

€315

€248

Unlimited Access for 2 Years

You can cancel any time.

Team Pass

Get a Business Account for you and your team

Share this post

Related Stories

Private rental sector remains strong despite Covid-19

How the programme for government will shape housing

Insight Niall Byrne 5 months ago

Comment: US must defuse Covid-19’s ticking time bomb of debt

Insight Todd G Buchholz 6 months ago

Comment: The recovery will be more U than V-shaped

Insight Larry Hatheway 6 months ago