The Commission on Elections (Comelec) said those running for public office may conduct “e-rallies” and “live streams” beginning Feb. 8, 2022 subject to the poll body’s guidelines. Feb. 8 is the official start of the May 2022 elections campaign period.
The Comelec recently released Resolution No. 10730 or the Rules and Regulations Implementing Republic Act 9006 or the “Fair Elections Act” which said “those who are running in the polls may hold political meetings, rallies or other similar activities online.”
The resolution further said “any political party or any candidate, individually or jointly with other aspirants, may hold peaceful online political meetings, rallies, or other similar activities during the campaign period. Such online political meetings, rallies, and similar activities are not covered by the limitations on broadcast advertising.”
“Live streaming on the candidates’ social media platforms shall be considered a form of e-rally,” the Comelec said.
The poll body added that the live streaming of “e-rallies” can be conducted every night, beginning Feb. 8, 2022, on the official social media channels of the poll regulator.
Politicians and organizers of e-rallies will be required to “include a disclosure that identifies it as a political meeting or rally, confirms, compliance with minimum health protocols, and provides the relevant date, time, and location information.”
The Comelec said, “a live stream on the candidate’s social media platforms shall be considered a political meeting or rally” and “recordings of e-rallies shall be submitted to the Education and Information Department (EID) of the Comelec within 72 hours from the airing of the same.”
The poll regulator further said candidates “may receive in-platform gifts and game currency but shall not be allowed to give gifts to live stream audiences, nor to run promotions and campaigns that will award in-platform gifts or game currency to platform users and live stream audiences.”
The Comelec further said there will assigning of slots for live streams. The slots shall be assigned at random, based on the results of televised raffle of slots. The raffle shall take place on Jan. 8, 2022.
The poll body further said “the e-rally live streams shall be posted on Comelec’s official social media pages. During each live stream, the candidate will be allowed to see live comments to his live stream. The candidate may or may not respond to live comments.”