Election rules not enough to stop Twits

  • Breaking
  • 20/09/2014

By Geoffrey Miller

Twitter falls under the strict rules of the Electoral Act which ban comments which might influence voting until 7pm on Election Day.

So you might think the normally noisy and heavily opinionated New Zealand Twittersphere would fall silent.

But that's far from the case; many tweeters poked fun at the rules banning commentary by using the hashtag #ThingsYouCanTweetOnElectionDay, and there plenty of animal pictures being shared - mostly of cats, using the hashtag #electioncaturday.

Some tweeters tried to circumvent the rules by using code - like @kokimahau, who revealed a preference for driving on the "left-hand side of the road", while others openly flouted the rules.

On the serious side, electoral law expert Graeme Edgeler (@GraemeEdgeler) tweeted useful advice for voters - such as his reminder that you did not need to bring ID along to vote.

Twitter was also the place to go for selfies inside and outside polling booths, as well as the ritual-like photos of party leaders voting, which were also quickly retweeted - which are within the rules - with Radio Live (@LIVENewsDesk) tweeting John Key voting in Parnell, along with his wife Bronagh and son Max.

Geoffrey Miller is a researcher in New Zealand politics at the University of Otago

Some of Election Day's top tweets:

source: newshub archive