Meta to Require Labeling of Digitally Altered Political Ads (Including Those Generated By AI) – Looking at the Rules that Apply to Various Media Platforms Limiting Such Policies on Broadcast and Cable
(Broadcast Law Blog)In a recent announcement, Meta, the corporate entity behind Facebook, unveiled a pivotal policy shift. The company has mandated the labeling of advertisements leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) or other digital tools, especially concerning elections and issues with political or social ramifications. This development underscores the escalating concerns surrounding AI’s influence on political ads and the urgent need for regulatory frameworks, a topic explored in a prior article.
Diving into Meta’s Directive:
Meta’s delineation of disclosure requirements for digitally modified content delves into specific scenarios necessitating labeling:
Portrayal of real individuals engaging in actions or making statements contrary to reality.
Creation of lifelike yet entirely fictional entities or events, or manipulation of real event footage to convey misleading narratives.
Representation of purported real events that, in truth, fail to present an accurate depiction via image, video, or audio recordings.
The announcement stresses that inconsequential alterations facilitated by AI or digital tools, such as resizing, cropping, color adjustments, or sharpening, may proceed without mandated disclosure. However, even these seemingly minor tweaks trigger disclosure obligations if they fundamentally impact the advertisement’s core message. Previous instances have demonstrated the subtle use of manipulations, like shading, in attack ads to cast candidates negatively—a practice that Meta appears determined to curtail…