Use of social media in times of elections 28 October 20 Elena Scaramuzzi

Increasing use of social media worldwide has been presenting new challenges, including in times of elections. Some countries around the world have started addressing some of such challenges.

Governments aim at ensuring transparency and traceability of political advertising spending across all media, including social media, as well as the removal of content deemed illegal in the country.

Illegal content may include, depending on countries, defamatory and false content against a candidate, or messages that may put social order at risk. Social media can be mandated to remove illegal content, in accordance with laws and procedures defined in each country.

However, during elections social media may be asked to play a more proactive role, often based on voluntary agreements with national authorities, sometimes in accordance with specific legislation.

A new Global Trends report by Cullen International analyses three elections scheduled between 17 October and 29 November 2020, respectively in New Zealand, the United States and Brazil. Although in countries with very different political and electoral systems, what the three elections have in common is the fact social media are pervasively used in each of them.

The new Cullen International report also briefly analyses on the main lessons learned during the 2019 EU parliamentary elections, and what actions are planned at EU level in the near future to tackle disinformation.

To access our report on use of social media in times of election, please click on “Access the full content” to view the report - or on “Request Access”, in case you are not subscribed to our Global Trends service.

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