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Election and Misinformation

Right ahead of the election campaign for the EU Parliament elections the European Commission launches a video clip about misinformation

Clarifications after the elections Photo: AEP
Clarifications after the elections Photo: AEP

, 10.05.2024, 13:50

The European Commission has kicked off an information campaign for citizens on the risks posed by misinformation and information handling by players from outside the European Union. The Brussels’ move comes after a survey it made over the social networks Facebook and Instagram, which it accuses of failing to comply with their obligations on fighting misinformation. In this context, the EU Executive has launched an audio-video clip to be broadcast on all the press channels in all the member states before the elections for the EU Parliament. The 30 second clip is advising the voters to have a critical attitude towards the content distributed by the online media, analyze and don’t believe everything they read.

Voters must be aware the video and audio materials can contain fake or incomplete information especially at this time marked by the accelerated development of the AI programmes. Another piece of advice is that they should check information and rely on trusted sources, such as the main stream press and not on sites, blogs or other social media disseminating various opinions and rumors instead of verified information.

Last but not least, European citizens should avoid conveying unverified information so that they themselves may not become a misinformation channel. The informative clip, which is going to appear on media channels in Romania as well by the end of this month, comes against the election campaign for the local and EU Parliament election, which kicked off in Romania on May 10th. We recall that it’s for the first time when Romanians will be voting for their local administration and their favourite MEPs on the same day, June 9th.

For 30 days from now on, discriminatory messages and slogans or those inciting to hate and intolerance as well as other forms of defamation are strictly forbidden.

The Central Election Office is firmly recommending to election contenders to obey the general rules of the campaign have a balanced, sincere and constructive discourse and avoid distorted and manipulated information in order to be able to prevent the dissemination of fake news or other forms of derailment that may hinder the good functioning of the election process. The head of the Permanent Election Authority, Toni Greblă, has announced that roughly 21 million ballot papers have been printed, and that for the first time ever 900 polling stations will be set up in foreign countries upon the request of the Romanian communities living in those countries.

The official has also pointed out that Romanians also have access to the “Code of Good Practices regarding Misinformation” as well as the “Guide for the Prevention and Combating Misinformation Actions Targeting Voters’, available on the websites of the Central Election Office and the Permanent Election Authority.

(bill)

Photo: eyeonicimages / pixabay.com
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