EXCLUSIVE: Trump campaign moves deceptive ads from Facebook to Google

By Judd Legum

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On April 11, Popular Information first exposed the Trump campaign's deceptive Facebook strategy. The primary example was an ad featuring Howard, an African-American man who supported Trump.

Howard, a tiny disclaimer revealed, was portrayed in the ad by an actor. This was a little strange, but no big deal if the actor who played Howard reflected the characteristics of the real Howard.

But further investigation revealed that Howard was presented to Facebook audiences as a young man, a middle-aged man, or a senior man, depending on who the Trump campaign was targeting. Each time, Howard delivered the same testimonial.

We don't know how old Howard is -- or if he exists -- but we know that he is not three different ages simultaneously. The ads, which appear to violate Facebook's prohibition on deceptive content, were taken down shortly after the Popular Information report.

But Howard is back. This time on Google. Here is young Howard delivering a full-throated endorsement of Trump.

And here is old Howard, delivering the same endorsement.

These videos were unlisted but were run as ads by the Trump campaign in the last few days.

Google's ad policies prohibit misrepresentation.

"We don't want users to feel misled by ads, so we strive to ensure ads are clear and honest, and provide the information that users need to make informed decisions. We don’t allow ads or destinations that intend to deceive users by excluding relevant information or giving misleading information," the company says.

Google did not immediately respond to requests for comment.  


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