Singapore's GE gets social
Singapore – The local government has relaxed the rules around political campaigns in Singapore, allowing new media tools like Facebook, Twitter, and podcasts to be used for the upcoming general election.
According to local news sources, politicians in the country are given the green light to use podcasts, videocasts, blogs, microblogs, MMS, photo-sharing platforms, social networking sides and electronic media applications like iPhone apps in their campaigns. However, they will need to make an early declaration of the media platforms they wish to use.
“The rules today are pretty much in sync with how new media is used in political campaigns in many parts of the world,” Hong Kah GRC MP Zaqy Mohamad said in The Straits Times.
This is a natural progression, according to Kenny Powar, CEO of Possible Worldwide. “Of course there are risks, but as seen during the last presidential elections in the US, done correctly the impact can be very powerful.”
Paul Soon, regional director at XM-Asia Singapore believes the new change in political campaign regulations is not surprising as government agencies like Health Promotion Board and Singapore Tourism Board have already been leading the social marketing scene in Singapore.
With the loosening of rules, political parties can now reach the younger voters and engage them directly. More importantly, Soon emphasises that they now “have a greater responsibility to Singaporeans to keep their promises, be consistent in their policy views and ultimately a lot more accountability.”
All new media tools had been banned at the previous general election in 2006, involving cases where political parties were instructed to take podcasts off their websites.
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