US – Twitter has said it will increase transparency around its advertising, including stricter rules for political ads on the platform, and will also submit to an audit by the Media Rating Council (MRC).

Person using Twitter app on phone

The social network said it is planning to “launch an industry-leading transparency center”. According to the company’s product and engineering head, Bruce Falck, it will “offer everyone visibility into who is advertising on Twitter, details behind those ads, and tools to share your feedback with us”.

The move comes amidst increased scrutiny of tech platforms for their role in the spread of fake content.

Twitter, along with Facebook and Google, is implicated in an investigation currently being carried out by the US Senate into the use of Russian propaganda to influence the outcome of the US presidential election in 2016.  

As part of its planned changes, Twitter said it would now stipulate that those placing an electioneering ad will have to identify it as such. It also said it would make it clearer to the user when they are seeing a political ad – these ads will be marked with a visual indicator.

According to the company, its ‘transparency center’ will enable people to see what ads are being targeted to them, and information on which ads they are eligible to receive, based on their demographic details. It will also show all ads running on the platform at a given time, how long those ads have been running and creative associated with those campaigns.

The company has also agreed to submit to an audit by the Media Rating Council (MRC).

The MRC announced that Twitter had agreed to submit a set of measurement metrics for accreditation consideration, and that the company has begun the first phase of the accreditation process.

The audit will look at metrics included in the data feeds Twitter prepares for third-party measurement, as well as the company’s own reporting of certain metrics.