Posts on individual accounts not ads: EC

BENGALURU: Messages, responses, video clips and photographs on social media platforms and individual websites cannot be treated as advertisements. But any advertisement material published on e-paper must have legitimate authorisation from the pre-poll committee, the Election Commission of India has clarified.

During a workshop organised for the media, Additional Electoral Officer Dr K.G. Jagadish said any comment, video or audio clip posted on social media by an individual other than a politician and a candidate does not amount to advertisement. If a candidate has entrusted the affairs of running his social media accounts to a third person, then it’s considered as advertisement and the expenses incurred would be added to his list, he said. If any message is hurting the sentiments of a caste or religion, action will be taken as per the model code of conduct rules.

What is social media?
Wikipedia, Twitter, Youtube, Facebook and mobile applications are considered social media channels by the Election Commission. It has said that a candidate has to share his/her details of social media accounts while filing the nomination. Any expense towards internet and social media should be disclosed to the commission as the expenditure towards election.

Bulk messages by any political party or candidate will be under watch. 


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