Trademark Productions does its best to provide you with great information regarding social media trends and tactics, as well as breaking news stories though our blog posts. Today, we are here to help inform our neighbors to the north…Canada. Active Canadian Twitter teeters may need to be slightly careful on what they tweet out next month. If Canadians plan on tweeting about information regarding the upcoming Canadian elections, they’d better be careful. A 73-year-old law may cost tweeters up to five years in prison or a fine up to $25,000.
A non-partisan agency, Elections Canada, has been facing harsh criticism because they’ve stated that they will enforce laws with the Canada Elections Act, specifically section 329.
Section 329 reads as follows:
“No person shall transmit the result or purported result of the vote in an electoral district to the public in another electoral district before the close of all of the polling stations in that other electoral district.”
This law was enacted back in 1938 to prevent radio stations from stating election results on the east coast four hours before the polls closed on the west coast. But there was no such thing as Twitter or Facebook back in those days. This law seems somewhat preposterous to people in this day-and-age because social media is not the only media outlet which people can potentially provides poll information preemptively.
“It’s not like Elections Canada will be monitoring your Twitter stream. However, if there are complaints, the Elections Canada Commissioner will investigate,” said a spokesperson from the Vancouver Sun.
This has sparked outrage within the social media community, especially with Canadians! People are tweeting, blogging and using all means of social media to spark conversations and debates about this ridiculous law. Still, it doesn’t seem like Elections Canada will be actively targeting people. With how accessible information is in today’s technical age, it’s almost impossible to rid the Internet of any information.