Facebook’s parent company Meta was issued a $25 million fine Wednesday for violating Washington states campaign finance laws.
According to court documents, King County Superior Court Judge Douglass North found Meta to be in violation of Washington’s political disclosure law 822 separate times between 2019 and 2021 and issued the maximum possible fine for each instance, which totaled up to $30,000 per violation.
Meta was also ordered to “come into full compliance” with the state’s election transparency laws within the next 30 days as well as pay the attorney’s fees for the case, which Ferguson has requested be tripled for a total of $10.5 million. The final total will be decided by North at a later date.
According to The Seattle Times, the state’s election transparency laws, which have been in place since 1972, require ad sellers to “disclose the names and addresses of political buys, the targets of such ads and, the total number of viewers of each ad.” The judge found that Meta had intentionally violated the standards.
Washington Democrat Attorney General Bob Ferguson said “that he had “one word for Facebook’s conduct in this case – arrogance.” Read more…