CBC News: ‘Not going to be a cakewalk’: Social media sites face hurdles curbing foreign political ads (In the News)

CBC News: ‘Not going to be a cakewalk’: Social media sites face hurdles curbing foreign political ads

By Mark Gollom

Some of the ads that ran this election on social media sites mentioned the candidates but were not expressly election ads, said Richard Hasen, a political science and law professor at the University of California at Irvine. And many of them appeared to be neither election ads nor ads mentioning candidates…

Hasen also said it’s not clear whether the restrictions on electioneering communication by foreign entities apply on digital-only platforms.

“It appears, from what little we know, most of these ads would not be illegal under current U.S. law.”

To address this, a bill named the “Honest Ads Act” has been drafted by two Democratic senators and has received support from Republican Sen. John McCain…

The Institute for Free Speech said the bill fails “to meaningfully address foreign interference while placing considerable limits and burdens on the online political speech of Americans.”

“Legislation that attempts to limit foreign interference in our democracy by broadly regulating the free speech rights of Americans would, in fact, undermine our democracy and directly advance Vladimir Putin’s agenda,” wrote Eric Wang of the institute.

The Center for Competitive Politics is now the Institute for Free Speech.