Twitter is to ban political advertising worldwide

Twitter is banning all political advertising on the social media platform.

Chief executive Jack Dorsey has tweeted that the social media site will ban all political ads globally starting next month.

He said social media companies give advertisers ‘an unfair advantage’ in spreading ‘highly targeted, misleading messages.’

The new policy, which will come into force from November 22, will ban ads on political issues as well as from candidates.

Dorsey said: ‘We considered stopping only candidate ads, but issue ads present a way to circumvent.

‘Additionally, it isn’t fair for everyone but candidates to buy ads for issues they want to push. So, we’re stopping these too.’

He tweeted the announcement on Wednesday night, saying the company recognised that advertising on social media offers ‘an unfair level of targeting compared to other mediums’.

Dorsey said the Twitter took the action to head off potential problems from ‘machine learning-based optimisation of messaging and micro-targeting, unchecked misleading information, and deep fakes.’

Facebook has faced criticism since it disclosed earlier in October that it will not fact-check ads by politicians or their campaigns.

Chief executive Mark Zuckerberg told US Congress last week that politicians have the right to free speech on Facebook.

Critics, including former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, have called on Facebook to ban all political ads.