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EU Commission wants to regulate political advertising in the net more strictly

According to the European Commission, political advertising on the Internet is to be regulated more strictly in the future. “Today digital advertising for political purposes is an uncontrolled race of dirty and opaque methods,” said the Vice President of the EU Commission responsible for legal issues, Vera Jourova, of Welt am Sonntag. In a few weeks she will present a law to put the world of political canvassing in order. “Attempts to influence elections or voter behavior must be subjected to stricter rules that also guarantee significant transparency,” she said.

Jourova also referred to a new Eurobarometer survey, according to which four in ten Europeans said that they did not know whether certain online content was political or not. The Czech said: “We cannot accept that. The citizens need to know why they are getting an election advertisement, who paid for it and which data was used to address selected people with the election advertisement.” That will be ensured by a European law.

Specifically, it should therefore be regulated, among other things, that sensitive data that is exchanged between friends on social media platforms may no longer be used for political purposes in the future. “I mean information about sexual orientation, religion or political views,” said Jourova. “We know that such data is needed – or rather misused – today to find target groups for political advertising.”

According to the Welt am Sonntag report, the law could particularly focus on data analysis companies that create psychograms of users on the basis of likes, orders or personal information online, which are then used for targeted political messages. It’s not just about Facebook and Google, but also Cambridge Analytica and other companies, said Jourova.

(bme)

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