Facebook announced yesterday that, notwithstanding "much debate in recent months about political advertising online and the different approaches that companies have chosen to take," it has decided to stick with its current political advertising policies.

Facebook had previously said that it is taking a hands-off approach to advertising by political candidates -- that it won't verify whether politicians claims are truthful and won't prohibit political advertising that contains false claims. In its most recent announcement, Facebook said that it also will not limit the targeting of political ads. Facebook said, "we don’t think decisions about political ads should be made by private companies."

Facebook said that its hands-off approach doesn't mean that "politicians can say whatever they like in advertisements on Facebook." Facebook said that politicians must follow Facebook's Community Standards, which prohibit (among other things) hate speech, harmful content, and content designed to intimidate voters or stop them from exercising their right to vote. Facebook also said that it "regularly" disallows advertisements from politicians that violate its rules.

"We recognize this is an issue that has provoked much public discussion — including much criticism of Facebook’s position"