The UK Government spent almost £100,000 (€112,000) on Facebook adverts promoting Theresa May’s Brexit deal in the lead-up to the Commons vote being pulled, figures released by the social media firm show.

The company’s ad library report showed between Sunday December 2 and Saturday December 8 the UK Government spent £96,684 (€107,990) on 11 promotions on Facebook.

They included videos on “what the Brexit Deal means for you – explained in 60 seconds” and others focusing on immigration and jobs.

Three videos, intending to explain the deal in terms of free trade, the economy and “controlling our borders”, cost between £10,000 (€11,100) and £50,000 (€55,800) each to promote, reaching between 500,000 and one million Facebook users apiece.

The Cabinet Office has yet to respond to requests for comment.

What the Brexit Deal means for you in 60 seconds

What the Brexit Deal means for you – explained in 60 seconds 👇#BacktheBrexitDeal

Gepostet von UK government am Freitag, 7. Dezember 2018

Facebook’s new advert transparency measures are a reaction to sustained criticism of the platform throughout 2018, a year in which the Vote Leave campaign was sanctioned for behaviour related to advertising spending on the social network during the Brexit campaign.

There are also six active adverts on the official @10DowningStreet Twitter account promoting the same videos, although no information on the amount spent is currently available.

Facebook’s report comes a week after Cabinet Office Minister Chloe Smith revealed Downing Street had spent more than £50,000 promoting the deal in the previous three months.

Liberal Democrat MP Layla Moran, who obtained the previous figures with a parliamentary question, accused the Government of throwing taxpayers’ money “down the drain”.


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