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No ‘selfie’ with ballots, please, poll body advises

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Comelec spokesman James Jimenez. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO

Think before you take a “selfie” with your ballot today.

On the eve of the barangay balloting, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Sunday reminded cell phone-toting voters, especially the young ones, against taking snapshots of their ballots once they had been filled out.

Comelec spokesman James Jimenez pointed out that election laws forbid making a copy of filled-out ballots, including taking photos of them.

“It’s legal to take photos of your blank ballot. But once it is already filled out, you cannot take a picture of it, as such action is tantamount to making a carbon copy of it, which is prohibited,” Jimenez explained.

“It’s also OK to stand in front of the Board of Election inspectors and have your selfie taken but no selfie with the filled-out ballot,” he said.

Selfies refer to photographs one takes of oneself with the use of a smartphone or digital camera. These are usually posted on social networking and online photo-sharing sites, like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

In Resolution No. 9571, the Comelec states that the use of carbon paper, paraffin paper or other means of making a copy of the contents of the ballot is prohibited.

Other modes to identify one’s vote, including the use of digital cameras, cellular phones with cameras and other similar gadgets, are also banned, according to the resolution.

The Comelec reminded voters that the barangay elections would be conducted manually so they would have to come in early, as voting hours would be shorter compared to the automated elections.

“As much as possible, please vote early since voting will only be from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.,” Comelec Chair Sixto Brillantes Jr. said. “The reason is that we are using the manual system, so the counting process will be much longer than [in] the automated system.”

Brillantes said it would be better if voters would write down the complete names of their candidates rather than just indicate their last names or first names to avoid confusion during the counting of the ballots.

Originally posted: 9:34 pm | Sunday, October 27th, 2013
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Tags: barangay elections , Commission on Elections , digital cameras , election ballots , election code , Election Laws , Elections , News , prohibited acts during elections , selfie , smartphones , Social Media




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