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Facebook bans anti-vaccination advertisements, doesn’t say anything about taking down health misinformation

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Facebook will not show any advertisements that "discourage" getting vaccinated, the tech giant announced on Tuesday. The company said its decision has come in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, and concomitant misinformation that can "harm public health efforts". The company, however, didn't say anything about taking down posts by regular users hat spread rumours about vaccines and other anti-vax conspiracies. There is yet another caveat in Facebook's announcement — ads that call for or against legislation or government policies around vaccines, including for COVID-19, will still be allowed on the platform. "We’ll continue to require anyone running these ads to get authorized and include a ‘Paid for by’ label so people can see who is behind them," the company said. Facebook said that it regularly "refine[s]" its approach to ads around social issues, indicating that this policy might change in the future. In the blog post, Facebook said that it already doesn't allow ads with vaccine hoaxes that have been identified as such by the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). "Now, if an ad explicitly discourages someone from getting a vaccine we'll reject it, Enforcement will begin over the next few days," it said. It remains to be seen how the company would enforce this policy on US President Donald Trump whose posts about COVID-19 have often contradicted CDC's advice. Meanwhile, the company also announced that it will work with WHO and UNICEF on public health messaging campaigns to increase…

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