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Vote Leave’s targeted Brexit ads released by Facebook

The official Vote Leave campaign spent more than £2.7m on targeting ads at specific groups of people on Facebook – helping it to win the 2016 EU referendum.
The US social media giant has now released these ads to a committee of MPs investigating fake news – meaning everyone, not just those they were originally aimed at, can now see them.
The ads, created by Canadian company Aggregate AIQ, often focused on specific issues – such as immigration or animal rights – thought likely to push the buttons of certain groups of people, based on their age, where they lived and other personal data taken from social media and other sources.
The 120 pages of documents appear to back up the findings of the Electoral Commission, which ruled last week that Vote Leave broke electoral law by working jointly with another campaign, BeLeave – something denied by both groups.
A number of BeLeave ads were sent from the Vote Leave Facebook account, including this one:
There are 1,433 different messages in the data set released by Facebook, all with one common theme – although it is not always clear that they have come from a pro-Brexit campaign.
Here is one that was targeted at animal lovers:
This one, targeted at tea-lovers, is more obviously pro-Brexit:
Polar bears were also recruited to the cause:
The adverts contained in the Facebook data set were seen more than 169 million times in total.
The BeLeave messages were more closely directed at younger voters, promising a “brighter future” if the UK could stop “EU regulators keeping us in the past” and accusing Brussels of regulating ride-sharing apps such as Uber and enforcing quotas on data streaming.
Data provided by Facebook suggests some of the most seen images were produced by BeLeave. This image was displayed on the screens of target audience members more than five million times:
Older voters tended to be treated to claims about how much money the UK was sending to the EU. More than 140 ads made reference to the controversial claim that £350m a week sent to the EU could be spent on the NHS instead:
Alternative uses for the £350m included schools and flood defences:

Source: BBC

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