Ads Without Identification
Users have come across numerous advertisements lacking the customary “Ad” tag that distinguishes them from organic posts by indicating they are paid content. Although unmarked, these posts are unmistakably advertisements; by clicking on the three dots, it becomes evident that they are sponsored content.
Calls for Transparency
Nandini Jammi, co-founder of the monitoring group Check My Ads, has exhibited instances of these unmarked ads on her Twitter X account in recent days. A non-profit organization is actively monitoring the situation and encourages X users to report any such examples they encounter.
Possible Regulatory Implications
In addition to frustrating users who may be misled into thinking these ads originate from regular accounts, the absence of labels may potentially raise concerns with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
Jeffrey Chester, executive director of the Center for Digital Democracy, an organization advocating for digital rights, consumer protection, and privacy, commented, “The FTC should investigate X’s use of hidden advertising and whether it engages in deceptive business practices. X should be mandated to erase any data collected from users by itself or its advertising partners, alongside facing fines and other penalties.” Chester also questioned the efficacy of advertising on X, given the platform’s unique environment.
NIX Solutions notes that it remains unclear whether these unlabeled ads are a result of error or a deliberate alteration. Network X has refrained from issuing a statement on this matter.