We’ve been following the Russian-linked Facebook ad scandal. Monday, Facebook gave federal lawmakers investigating Russian interference into the 2016 election some 3,000 ads they believe may have been placed by Russian-linked entities.

Approximately 10 million Americans may have seen these ads in their Facebook feeds.

Tuesday, the Daily Caller reported that more than half the Americans exposed to these ads didn’t see them until after they’d cast their ballots.

More than half of the 10 million Americans estimated to have seen Russian-linked political ads saw them after Election Day in 2016, according to Facebook.

Fifty-six precent of the total times ads were displayed were shown after the election, with 44 percent shown before, Elliot Schrage, Facebook’s vice president of policy and communications, wrote of the data the company provided to Congress.

Facebook handed over to Congress roughly 3,000 ads with links to Russia on Monday. The company said it sold $100,000 worth of ads to Russian-linked sources investigators believe were trying to sway the results of the 2016 election.

However, more than half of the Americans exposed to the ads on Facebook saw them they had cast their votes on Nov. 8. About 4.4 million would have been exposed to the ads before Election Day, but it’s impossible to know if simply scrolling past a political ad would sway their vote.

“Roughly 25% of the ads were never shown to anyone,” Schrage wrote. “That’s because advertising auctions are designed so that ads reach people based on relevance, and certain ads may not reach anyone as a result.”

Facebook alerts publishers to how many people an ad “reached”. But in Facebook jargon, “reached” doesn’t mean someone spent time contemplating the ad, clicking on the ad, or even noticing it. “Reached” means the ad was pushed into x number of people’s feeds, most of who scroll right past the ad without noticing.

A few weeks ago, Facebook unveiled a new political ad transparency politics when it was revealed Russian-connected actors placed thousands of ads on the social media platform.

Follow Kemberlee on Twitter @kemberleekaye


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