Science & technology
Polling booth selfies sweep Netherlands
Publish Date: Mar 20, 2014
Polling booth selfies sweep Netherlands
Dutch Democrats 66 party (D66) leader Alexander Pechtold makes a selfie after he casts his ballot. PHOTO BY AFP
  • mail
  • img
newvision

THE HAGUE- Dutch citizens and politicians united on Wednesday in posting voting booth selfie photos, an increasingly popular phenomenon that could threaten the principle of the secret ballot but also encourages people to vote.
 
Alexander Pechtold, who heads the centrist D66 party, was among the many Dutch voting in Wednesday's local elections who tweeted a #stemfie, a combination of "stemmen", the Dutch word for voting, and selfie.
 
The photos, often of voters posing with the red pencil used to make their democratic choice or the candidate list, spread over Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, with the #stemfie hashtag trending.
 
Interior Minister Ronald Plasterk tweeted: "I'm not calling on people to take a #stemfie, but it is allowed."
 
"You cannot affect the confidentiality of the voting process by taking pictures of other people, but if you want to take a photo of yourself, you can," Plasterk told Dutch television channel RTL.
 
The phenomenon of the polling booth selfie is sweeping the world, forcing countries to take a position.
 
Some US states forbid polling booth selfies, some allow it, while it is expressly forbidden in South Africa and the Philippines.
 
"We had quite a few questions from municipalities in the run-up to the elections about whether selfies were allowed in the voting booth, because selfies are in fashion," interior ministry spokesman Tijs Manten told AFP.
 
"We looked at the electoral law and there was nothing saying we should forbid it: as long as people are just taking a photo of themselves and no one else, as long as people's right to cast a vote in secret is respected and voting procedures are not disturbed, there's no problem," Manten said.
 
The interior ministry in January sent a memo to municipalities informing them that 'stemfies' were officially authorised.
 
"We thought it could even be a good way of getting people to go out and vote," said Manten.
 
AFP
 

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
South Korea
South Korea's Samsung and LG unveiled new smartwatches Thursday with upgraded functions and design as they step up their drive to lead an increasingly competitive market for wearable devices....
Iran
Tehran will "accelerate" arming Palestinians in retaliation for Israel deploying a spy drone over Iran, which was shot down, a military commander said...
WhatsApp reaches 600 million active users
THAT'S up from the roughly 450 million it had in February when Facebook first announced plans to acquire the messaging service for $16 billion with another $3 billion in restricted stock...
Youtube to charge for music videos?
YOUTUBE will begin charging subscriptions for viewers to watch official music videos on their site with no ads. This will follow streaming services subscription plans like Spotify, Pandora (P) and Rhapsody...
LG to unveil circular smartwatch
ANDROID Wear supports round and square designs, but up until now Motorola has been the only company to announce an Android Wear device with a round face...
Galileo satellites lose their way in space
Two European Galileo satellites launched as part of a navigation system designed to rival GPS have failed to locate their intended orbit, launch firm Arianespace said Saturday....
Do you think the National Census positively contributes to improved Livelihood in Uganda?
Yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter