The Iona Institute has hit out at what appears to be a Twitter ban on any advertising from the organisation, after it sought to book an advert on the platform for a video featuring the charitable work of the Catholic Church. 

Director David Quinn said “Twitter has banned Iona Institute from advertising this extremely inoffensive video. They have not given a specific reason. They have simply said it violates policy.”

He then revealed that Twitter had slapped a ban on the Iona Institute advertising at all on the platform: “In fact, Twitter will not allow us to advertise, full stop,” he said.

“Officially, they are supposed to allow “cause-based advertising” that “can facilitate public conversation around important topics.” So why the ban?” Quinn asked.

“It’s deplorable that Twitter have not alone banned an ad that praises the good the Catholic Church does in helping millions of people worldwide everyday, but has banned us completely from advertising on its platform. They have given us no specific reason and have only cited general policy reasons,” he said.

“They don’t allow ads ‘that drive political, judicial, legislative, or regulatory outcomes’. But our video comes under none of these categories. They allow cause-based ads that ‘facilitate public conversation around important topics.’ So why is this video advert which simply illustrates the good the Catholic Church in providing services to people worldwide not be permitted?.”

“It is hard not to see bias behind the move,” the Iona director said. “What is doubly frustrating is how hard it is to find anyone to deal with. All you receive are automated responses.”

“We have had similar experiences before with Big Tech. For example, Facebook banned an ad called ‘One of Us’ that showed an 11 week old baby in the womb. They called it ‘violent and graphic content’. Eventually we got that ban lifted, but only when journalists contacted them. Hopefully something similar will happen here.” Mr Quinn said.