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AB-2188 Political Reform Act of 1974: campaign disclosures: advertisements.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 05/09/2018 09:00 PM
AB2188:v96#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  May 09, 2018
Amended  IN  Assembly  April 05, 2018
Amended  IN  Assembly  March 23, 2018

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill No. 2188


Introduced by Assembly Member Mullin
(Coauthors: Assembly Members Chiu, Gloria, Levine, and McCarty)
(Coauthor: Senator Dodd)

February 12, 2018


An act to amend Sections 84502, 84504.3, 84504.4, and 84510 of, and to add Section 84504.6 to, the Government Code, relating to the Political Reform Act of 1974.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 2188, as amended, Mullin. Political Reform Act of 1974: campaign disclosures: advertisements.
Existing law, the Political Reform Act of 1974, requires specified disclosures in advertisements regarding the source of the advertisement. The act defines “advertisement” for this purpose as a general or public communication that is authorized and paid for by a committee for the purpose of supporting or opposing a candidate or candidates for elective office or a ballot measure or ballot measures. Among
Among other things, the act requires an electronic media advertisement, other than an Internet Web site, paid for by a committee, other than a political party committee or a candidate controlled committee established for an elective office of the controlling candidate, to include the text “Who funded this ad?” ad?,” unless including the text would be impracticable, and a hyperlink to an Internet Web site containing specified disclosures. However, the disclosures regarding who paid for the advertisement. For an Internet Web site paid for by a committee, other than a political party committee or a candidate controlled committee established for an elective office of the controlling candidate, the act requires the Internet Web site to include only specified disclosures regarding who paid for the advertisement, without exception.
This bill would exclude an email message from the requirements relating to an electronic media advertisement and, instead, would require an email message that is paid for by a committee, other than a political party committee or a candidate controlled committee established for an elective office of the controlling candidate, to include the specified disclosures regarding who paid for the advertisement in the same manner as an Internet Web site. The bill would require that the email message or Internet Web site include the disclosures at top or bottom of the email message, or at the top or bottom of every publicly accessible page of the Internet Web site, as applicable.
The act requires that an advertisement made via a form of electronic media that allows users to engage in discourse and post content, or any other type of social media, only include specified disclosures in a contrasting color and in no less than 8 point font on the committee’s profile, landing page, or similar location, and not on each individual post, comment, or other similar communication.
This bill would require the disclosures on the committee’s profile, landing page, or similar location to be on the cover or header photo of the committee’s profile, landing page, or similar location and in no less than 10 point font. The bill would require the disclosures to be fully visible on the cover or header photo when the profile, landing page, or similar location is viewed from any electronic device that is commonly used to view this form of electronic media. If making the disclosures fully visible on a commonly used electronic device would be impracticable, the bill would require the cover or header photo of the profile, landing page, or similar location to include only a hyperlink to an Internet Web site containing the disclosures.
This bill would require an online platform, as defined, to display a hyperlink with the text “Who funded this ad?” ad?,” “Paid for by,” or “Ad Paid for by on an advertisement paid for by a committee. committee that is linked to a specified page containing disclosures regarding who paid for the advertisement. The bill would require an online platform to maintain and make available a complete record of any request to purchase an advertisement disseminated on the online platform made by a committee that purchased $500 or more in advertisements on the online platform during the preceding 12 months. The bill would require an online platform to display a prominent button, tab, or hyperlink near the top of a profile, landing page, or similar location of the committee that links to a page clearly showing the records of any request made by the committee to purchase an advertisement on the online platform. the advertisements. The bill would make a person who intentionally violates these provisions for the purpose of avoiding disclosure liable in a civil or administrative action brought by the Fair Political Practices Commission or any person for a fine up to 3 times the cost of the advertisement, including placement costs.
The act requires an advertisement paid for by a committee that is a political party committee or a candidate controlled committee established for an elective office of the controlling candidate to include a specified disclosure regarding who paid for the advertisement if the advertisement is paid for by an independent expenditure, supporting or opposing a ballot measure, or a radio or television advertisement. The act also requires a radio or television advertisement that is paid for by a political party or a candidate controlled committee established for an elective office of the controlling candidate, and that does not support or oppose a ballot measure and is not paid for by an independent expenditure, to include a specified disclosure regarding who paid for the advertisement.
This bill would require an electronic media advertisement, other than a mass electronic mailing, advertisement that is made via a form of electronic media that allows users to engage in discourse and post content, or any other type of social media, that is paid for by a political party or a candidate controlled committee established for an elective office of the controlling candidate, and that does not support or oppose a ballot measure and is not paid for by an independent expenditure, candidate to include a specified disclosure disclosures regarding who paid for the advertisement. advertisement.
Because a violation of the act is punishable as a misdemeanor, this bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.
This bill would provide that no reimbursement is required by this act for a specified reason.
The Political Reform Act of 1974, an initiative measure, provides that the Legislature may amend the act to further the act’s purposes upon a 2/3 vote of each house of the Legislature and compliance with specified procedural requirements.
This bill would declare that it furthers the purposes of the act.
Vote: 2/3   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: YES  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 84502 of the Government Code is amended to read:

84502.
 (a) (1) Any An advertisement paid for by a committee pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section 82013, other than a political party committee or a candidate controlled committee established for an elective office of the controlling candidate, shall include the words “Paid for by” by,” or similar words as prescribed in this article, followed by the name of the committee as it appears on the most recent Statement of Organization filed pursuant to Section 84101.
(2) Any An advertisement paid for by a committee pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section 82013 that is a political party committee or a candidate controlled committee established for an elective office of the controlling candidate shall include the words “Paid for by” by,” or similar words as prescribed in this article, followed by the name of the committee as it appears on the most recent Statement of Organization filed pursuant to Section 84101 if the advertisement is any of the following:
(A) Paid for by an independent expenditure.
(B) An advertisement supporting or opposing a ballot measure.
(C) A radio or television advertisement.
(D) An advertisement that is made via a form of electronic media that allows users to engage in discourse and post content, or any other type of social media.
(b) Any An advertisement paid for by a committee pursuant to subdivision (b) or (c) of Section 82013 shall include the words “Paid for by” followed by the name that the filer is required to use on campaign statements pursuant to subdivision (o) of Section 84211.

SECTION 1.SEC. 2.

 Section 84504.3 of the Government Code is amended to read:

84504.3.
 (a) An electronic media advertisement, other than an email message, Internet Web site, or an advertisement on an online platform that includes the disclosure required by Section 84504.6, paid for by a committee, other than a political party committee or a candidate controlled committee established for an elective office of the controlling candidate, shall comply with both of the following:
(1) Include the text “Who funded this ad?” in a contrasting color and a font size that is easily readable by the average viewer.
(2) The text shall be a hyperlink to an Internet Web site containing the disclosures required by Sections 84502, 84503, and 84506.5 in a contrasting color and in no less than 8 point font.
(b) Notwithstanding subdivision (a), the text required by paragraph (1) of subdivision (a) is not required if including the language would be impracticable. In such circumstances those circumstances, the advertisement need only include a hyperlink to an Internet Web site containing the disclosures required by Sections 84502, 84503, and 84506.5.
(c) Notwithstanding subdivisions (a) and (b), an email message, or Internet Web site site, paid for by a committee, other than a political party committee or a candidate controlled committee established for an elective office of the controlling candidate, shall include the disclosures required by Sections 84502, 84503, and 84506.5 printed clearly and legibly in a contrasting color and in no less than 8 point font. font at the top or bottom of the email message, or at the top or bottom of every publicly accessible page of the Internet Web site, as applicable.
(d) An Internet Web site that is hyperlinked as provided for in paragraph (2) of subdivision (a) shall remain online and available to the public until 30 days after the date of the election in which the candidate or ballot measure supported or opposed by the advertisement was voted upon.
(e) An advertisement made via a form of electronic media that is audio only and therefore cannot include either of the disclaimers disclosures in subdivision (a) shall comply with the disclaimer disclosure requirements for radio advertisements in Section 84504.
(f) (1) An advertisement made via a form of electronic media that allows users to engage in discourse and post content, or any other type of social media, shall only be required to include the disclosures required by Sections 84502, 84503, and 84506.5 in a contrasting color that is easily readable by the average viewer and in no less than 10 point font on the cover or header photo of the committee’s profile, landing page, or similar location and shall not be required to include the disclaimer disclosure required by subdivision (a) on each individual post, comment, or other similar communication. The disclosures specified in this subdivision shall be fully visible on the cover or header photo when the profile, landing page, or similar location is viewed from any electronic device that is commonly used to view this form of electronic media.
(2) Notwithstanding paragraph (1), if making the disclosures specified in paragraph (1) fully visible on a commonly used electronic device would be impracticable, the cover or header photo of the profile, landing page, or similar location need only include a hyperlink to an Internet Web site containing the disclosures specified in paragraph (1).
(g) The disclaimer disclosures required by this section does do not apply to advertisements made via social media for which the only expense or cost of the communication is compensated staff time unless the social media account where the content is posted was created only for the purpose of advertisements governed by this title.

SEC. 2.SEC. 3.

 Section 84504.4 of the Government Code is amended to read:

84504.4.
 (a) A radio or television advertisement that is paid for by a political party or a candidate controlled committee established for an elective office of the controlling candidate, and that does not support or oppose a ballot measure and is not paid for by an independent expenditure, shall include the disclosure required by Section 84502 subject to the following requirements:
(1) In a radio advertisement, the words shall be included at the beginning or end of the advertisement and read in a clearly spoken manner and in a pitch and tone substantially similar to the rest of the advertisement.
(2) In a television advertisement, the words shall appear in writing for at least four seconds with letters in a type size that is greater than or equal to 4 percent of the height of the screen.
(b) An electronic media advertisement, other than a mass electronic mailing as defined in Section 84305, advertisement that is made via a form of electronic media that allows users to engage in discourse and post content, or any other type of social media, that is paid for by a political party or a candidate controlled committee established for an elective office of the controlling candidate, and that does not support or oppose a ballot measure and is not paid for by an independent expenditure, shall include the disclosure required by subdivision (f) of Section 84504.3 in the advertisement. Section 84502 in accordance with subdivision (f) of Section 84504.3.

SEC. 3.SEC. 4.

 Section 84504.6 is added to the Government Code, to read:

84504.6.
 (a) An online platform shall do all of the following:
(1) (A) Display a hyperlink with the text “Who funded this ad?” ad?,” “Paid for by,” or “Ad Paid for by on an advertisement paid for by a committee. The hyperlink shall be all of the following:

(A)

(i) In the same or similar font and in at least the same font size, which shall be no less than 8 point font, size as the online platform’s text text, and easily readable to the average viewer, stating that the advertisement is an advertisement or is promoted or sponsored.

(B)

(ii) Located adjacent to the text stating that the advertisement is an advertisement or is promoted or sponsored.

(C)

(iii) Clearly clickable.

(D)

(iv) Linked to the profile or landing page of the committee that paid for the advertisement, advertisement; to another page to which the average viewer would normally navigate to view additional information about a committee containing the disclosures required by Sections 84502, 84503, and 84506.5 in a manner that is easily seen and readable by the average viewer; or to an Internet Web site containing the disclosure required by subdivision (c) of Section 84504.3.
(B) Notwithstanding subparagraph (A), the text required by subparagraph (A) is not required if including the text would be impracticable. In those circumstances, the advertisement need only include a hyperlink to the profile or landing page of the committee that paid for the advertisement, or to an Internet Web site containing the disclosures required by subdivision (c) of Section 84504.3.
(2) (A) Maintain, and make available for online public inspection in machine readable format, a complete record of any request to purchase on the online platform an advertisement that is made disseminated on the online platform by a committee that purchased five hundred dollars ($500) or more in advertisements on the online platform during the preceding 12 months. Each record shall contain all of the following:
(i) A digital copy of the advertisement.
(ii) A description of the audience targeted reached by the advertisement, the approximate number of views generated from the advertisement, and the date and time that the advertisement was first displayed and last displayed.
(iii) Information regarding the average rate charged for the advertisement.
(iv) The name of the candidate to which the advertisement refers and the office to which the candidate is seeking election, as applicable and whether the advertisement is in support of or opposition to the candidate or the ballot measure to which the advertisement refers.
(v) The name and identification number of the committee that paid for the advertisement.
(B) The information required under this paragraph shall be made available as soon as possible and shall be retained by the online platform for no less than four years.
(3) (A) Display a prominent button, tab, or hyperlink with the text “View Ads” or similar text in one of the following locations: (i) near the top of a profile, landing page, or similar location of a committee that paid for an advertisement in a position that the average viewer will readily see it upon viewing that page. page; (ii) on a page that displays the committee’s profile information or biographical information; (iii) or on a page on which the average viewer would normally navigate to view additional information about a committee. The
(B) The button, tab, or hyperlink shall link to a page clearly showing all of the advertisement records required by paragraph (2).
(b) (1) A committee that requests to purchase an disseminates an advertisement on an online platform, upon requesting the dissemination, shall expressly notify the online platform through which the advertisement would be disseminated that the advertisement is an advertisement as defined in subdivision (a) of Section 84501.
(2) A committee that disseminates an advertisement on an online platform shall provide the online platform with all information necessary for the online platform to comply with the requirements of this section.
(3) An online platform that creates a mechanism for a committee requesting dissemination of an advertisement to expressly notify the online platform if the advertisement is an advertisement as defined in subdivision (a) of Section 84501 and to provide all information necessary for the online platform to comply with the requirements of this section may rely in good faith on the information provided by the committee to the online platform to satisfy the online platform’s obligations under subdivision (a).
(c) For purposes of this section, an online platform “online platform means a public-facing Internet Web site, web application, or digital application, including a social network, ad network, or search engine, which that sells advertisements and has 50,000,000 or more unique monthly United States visitors or users for a majority of months during the preceding 12 months. directly to advertisers. A public-facing Internet Web site, web application, or digital application is not an online platform for purposes of this section if it only displays advertisements that are sold directly to advertisers through another online platform.

SEC. 4.SEC. 5.

 Section 84510 of the Government Code is amended to read:

84510.
 (a) (1) In addition to the remedies provided for in Chapter 11 (commencing with Section 91000), a person who violates Section 84503 or 84506.5 is liable in a civil or administrative action brought by the Commission or any person for a fine up to three times the cost of the advertisement, including placement costs.
(2) Notwithstanding paragraph (1), a person who intentionally violates a provision of Sections 84504 to 84504.3, inclusive, or Section 84504.5 or 84504.6, for the purpose of avoiding disclosure is liable in a civil or administrative action brought by the Commission or any person for a fine up to three times the cost of the advertisement, including placement costs.
(b) The remedies provided in subdivision (a) shall also apply to any person who purposely causes any other person to violate any of the sections described in paragraph (1) or (2) of subdivision (a) or who aids and abets any other person in a violation.
(c) If a judgment is entered against the defendant or defendants in an action brought under this section, the plaintiff shall receive 50 percent of the amount recovered. The remaining 50 percent shall be deposited in the General Fund of the state. In an action brought by a local civil prosecutor, 50 percent shall be deposited in the account of the agency bringing the action and 50 percent shall be paid to the General Fund of the state.

SEC. 5.SEC. 6.

 No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution because the only costs that may be incurred by a local agency or school district will be incurred because this act creates a new crime or infraction, eliminates a crime or infraction, or changes the penalty for a crime or infraction, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the Government Code, or changes the definition of a crime within the meaning of Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution.

SEC. 6.SEC. 7.

 The Legislature finds and declares that this bill furthers the purposes of the Political Reform Act of 1974 within the meaning of subdivision (a) of Section 81012 of the Government Code.