Twitter will shield ‘legitimate’ news orgs from its political ad policy

Criteria to qualify include monthly traffic and a searchable archive.

Today, Axios learned that news outlets (and their affiliated journalists) can apply for exemption from Twitter's political and issue advertising policy. News organizations were concerned that by reporting on these issues, their ads would be placed in the same archive as political and issue ads. Del Harvey, the VP of trust and safety and Bruce Falck, the GM of revenue product at Twitter told Axios, "We don't believe that news organizations running ads on Twitter that report on these issues, rather than advocate for or against them, should be subject to this policy."

Facebook was also under fire from media organizations for its similar ad policies. The intention was to ensure that extremely partisan sites wouldn't be able to present their agendas as unbiased news through ad buys. But it hurt the regular media that reports on these issues. Facebook did take a small step back from its stringent policies, but Twitter is aiming to play more nicely with publishers than its rival social network did.

To qualify for exemption under Twitter's standards, news organizations much have a minimum of 200,000 monthly unique visitors in the US and a searchable archive and contact information available online. Single-issue publishers and "fringe" websites will not receive an exemption. These policies, which include increased transparency and a certification process that confirms a user's identity and location, will go into effect on September 30th.