Online campaigning?

When the day started there seemed to be some confusion among candidates about when the campaigning period ends, and what constitutes campaigning.

In previous years all Facebook groups and ads had to be shut down on the midnight before voting begins.  But this year many candidates were claiming they were unable to access their groups to shut them down.

By noon today many Facebook groups were still up.

Here’s the relevant sections from the STUSU By-Laws

  • S.11. No active campaigning shall continue past 11:59pm on the final day of campaigning, which shall include hanging posters, leaving previously hung posters on walls, distributing loose material, and otherwise communicating their candidacy.
  • S.12. The definition of “active campaigning” shall lie with the Chief Returning Officer.
  • S.13. Candidates with more than five (5) pieces of campaign material posted or distributed after the close of campaigning shall be charged $10.00 per item to a maximum of $50.00, whereupon the Chief Returning Officer has the authority to disqualify that candidate.
  • S.14. The Chief Returning Officer is empowered to discipline candidates found in violation of the electoral by-laws, which may include but is not limited to disqualification from candidacy.

But the candidates were saved by a decision made by the Chief Returning Officer late last night:

Dear everybody,

I have received a number of comments regarding candidates’ inability to shut down their own Facebook groups. I will admit to not knowing how Facebook groups are shut down and I have neither the time nor the inclination at this stage to learn. As such, I will make the following executive decision: Facebook groups may remain up during the campaign period, but you are not to make any comments on your own group, you are to close commernts from others if possible, and you should delete the group as soon as possible. If you have any questions, I won’t be answering them till daylight.

Sorry for the short notice,

Sean Thompson

Chief Returning Officer

St. Thomas University Students’ Union

So for now the groups stay up for students that still had them up.  It’s unclear if this will lead to any appeals of the results.

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  • Show Comments (5)

  • sm

    There were still a few posters up around Harrington this morning. The one on first floor was gone by lunch time though.

  • Marylynn Côt&e

    re:sm

    Residence halls (with the exception of the academic part of HCH) are not under the jurisdiction of the CRO

    from the by-laws campaigning section

    "S.7. The Chief Returning Officer shall have no jurisdiction over campaign materials posted or distributed in residences or off-campus."

  • Marylynn Côté

    re:sm
    Residence halls (with the exception of the academic part of HCH) are not under the jurisdiction of the CRO
    from the by-laws campaigning section
    “S.7. The Chief Returning Officer shall have no jurisdiction over campaign materials posted or distributed in residences or off-campus.”

  • Alex Solak

    Though to be fair, if they were up in Harrington, they probably got tore down pretty quick.

  • Alex Solak

    Though to be fair, if they were up in Harrington, they probably got tore down pretty quick.

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