A few months before the 2022 national elections, aspiring candidates left and right across the country are putting up all the stops to market themselves despite the challenges of the ongoing pandemic. Interestingly, Google made an announcement that it will not run election advertisements in the Philippines during the election campaign period from February 8, 2022, up to May 9, 2022.
Google will focus on election-related initiatives that aim to help people access accurate information via product features and media literacy programs, encourage participation in the voting process, and help protect the integrity of the elections. Given that there is a lot of fake news spreading, this is definitely good news.
Google’s policy will be applied to election advertisements that are purchased through Google’s advertising platforms such as Google Ads, Display and Video 360, and Shopping platforms. With that said, you won’t be seeing political ads that promote or oppose any political party or the candidacy of any person or party for public office on Google or YouTube.
This isn’t the first time Google focused its marketing machine on voter education. Earlier this year, Google promoted the magparehistroka.com website of COMELEC in partnership with MullenLowe TREYNA and Dashboard Philippines.
The animation-based and interactive website features the animated ghosts of the country’s national heroes to urge qualified voters to register for the upcoming elections.
“Nandyan din ‘yung learnings sa (magparehistroka.com) (There is the learnings from magparehistroka.com) . Tinuturuan natin ang kabataan (we taught the youth), through the website, that will resonate with them. We hope this will be easy for them to understand since relatable ito sa kanila (it is relatable to them),” COMELEC spokesperson James Jimenez shared. Given that a lot of campaigning is done online, it’s interesting to see how Google’s policy will affect the upcoming elections.
Art Macky Arquilla