PAFFREL monitored 11,000 Facebook pages, referred 1,972 observations to EC | Daily News


Presidential Election 2019

PAFFREL monitored 11,000 Facebook pages, referred 1,972 observations to EC

The People’s Action for Free and Fair Elections (PAFFREL) monitored over 11,000 Facebook pages during last year’s Presidential Election and referred a total 1,972 observations to the Election Commission, the PAFFREL said in its Interim Report released last week.

The election watchdog group said 1,638 of them were related to election law violations, 170 were related to provision of false information, 104 were related to hate speech, 27 were related to exerting influence, 17 were related to false information likely to provoke conflict and 16 were related to human rights violations.

The monitored Facebook pages included those maintained by political parties and candidates as well as popular Facebook pages. Of the above observations, 1,191 were related to the period of silence, 481 were related to the pre-election period, 273 were related to the day of election and 27 were related to the post election period.

“We made an attempt to do some control on the use of Facebook by referring our observations to Facebook institutions through Election Commission. It proved successful during the two day pre-election silence period, but the response from Facebook during the rest of the period was far from being adequate,” the PAFFREL said in its report.

“Social Media was not operative during the period when the laws for monitoring of media institutions were enacted. Therefore, it is necessary that new laws are enacted to include social media. Although social media operates in the free space, it is important that an independent committee is appointed to monitor and regulate their operations during election time,” the report added.


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