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Climate, the economy and – immigration. The candidates and parties standing in the European Parliament election are spending millions of euros on election advertising on Facebook. We have checked the contents of around 35,000 adverts from five different countries.
Data on political ads posted in the months leading up to the European elections highlights the differences between the political contexts in various member states. In Romania, it’s the national parties who spend the most, in Greece it’s individual candidates, and in Slovenia it’s the European Parliament.
Parties and candidates are spending increasing amounts on online political advertising. The situation can no longer be ignored, but the Parliament is yet to intervene.
Data shows that in the recent election campaign political parties spent millions of euro on targeted advertising on Facebook. The platform has almost completely replaced meetings and personal contact between candidates and voters.
During last month’s European election campaign, the EU institutions and European political parties spent almost four million euro on paid Facebook posts. Data published by Facebook reveals how much was spent in each country, and who spent the most.
Polish candidates to the European Parliament spent hundreds of thousands of złoty on Facebook ads. The most money was spent on European Coalition’s pages. Confederation, on the other hand, has clearly invested in the nationalist leader Krzysztof Bosak.
Analysis: German parties differ greatly in how they advertise on Facebook. The conservative CDU targets individual regions, the left-wing SPD tailors its adverts by gender. The far-right AfD has a totally different approach.
J++ and other media have examined the election ads ahead of the EU elections, but the data is lacking on several accounts.