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Social media under Election Commission`s scanner

Last Updated: Wednesday, March 19, 2014 - 23:23

Hyderabad: Provisions of the Model Code of Conduct shall also apply to the campaigning through the internet and the social media websites, an Election Commission of India official said here on Wednesday.

Political advertisements on social media will have to be pre-certified and expenditure on campaigning through the internet will have to be reported, Director-General, ECI, Akshay Rout said at a media workshop here.
The EC has asked the political parties to furnish information about their social media accounts.

To a question, Rout said that Media Certification and Monitoring Committee (MCMC) tracks the print and the electronic media, but tracking the social media was very complex job, and outside its ambit.
"We have put the responsibility on the political parties and the candidates and from yesterday we have put the onus on the social media networking sites on posting of uncertified advertisements...They have to ensure that these are cleared by the Commission," Rout said.

"All legal provisions for the electronic media on the paid news and political advertisements will apply to the campaigns on the social media as well," he said.

Rout further said that paid news had become a big issue in election management, and to tackle it, the Commission had set up an MCMC in every district of Andhra Pradesh where the voting would take place on April 30 and May 7.

MCMC will give daily reports on all advertising expenditure of the candidates including that on the paid news, if any. The cases of paid news in newspapers/magazines would be forwarded to the Press Council of India, while those in the electronic media will be sent to the national broadcasters association.

First Published: Wednesday, March 19, 2014 - 23:23
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