Facebook is apparently clamping down on the distribution of political advertisers using the social media platform.
WASHINGTONÂ â Leaders of the House Intelligence Committee said Wednesday they will soon make public the Facebook ads that were purchased by Kremlin-linked groups as part of Russia’s efforts to meddle in the 2016 presidential election.
Rep. Mike Conaway, R-Texas, who is leading the panel’s Russia investigation, said the committee will release about 3,000 ads provided to the panel by Facebook. He said the release will probably not come before a Nov. 1 public hearing the committee is holding with executives from Facebook, Twitter and Google.
“We will do that as quick as we can,” Conaway said of the release.
That hearing will focus on how Russians exploited social media sites to try to influence the election. Facebook recently revealed that Kremlin-linked groups purchased $100,000 worth of ads last year.
“Weâve asked for Facebookâs help to help scrub any personally identifiable information, but itâs our hope that when they conclude, then we can release them publicly,” said Rep. Adam Schiff of California, the senior Democrat on the committee.
Conaway and Schiff made those comments to reporters after a closed-door meeting with Facebook’s chief operating officer, Sheryl Sandberg.Â
The House committee’s willingness to make the ads public stands in contrast to the Senate Intelligence Committee, which has also received the ads and also has a Nov. 1 public hearing scheduled with social media executives.
Sen. Richard Burr, chairman of the Senate panel, told reporters last week that he did not intend to make the Facebook ads public in the midst of the committee’sÂ investigation of Russian interference in last year’s election and possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.