The Political Ads Facebook Won't Show You

Facebook has made promises to show the public all of the US political ads on its platform and to include a label saying who paid for each ad. To do this, Facebook uses a combination of of machine-learning models and voluntary compliance, and collects these ads in the Facebook Ad Library.

The problem is, Facebook routinely misses political ads.

That means those political ads don't include a "Paid for by" label and don't appear in Facebook's transparency tools.

The Ad Observer project project lets participants share with us the ads they see. We use a machine-learning model to mimic Facebook's definition of what is a political ad and detect the ads that Facebook missed — and show some of those to you here.