by Mike Masnick
Tue, Nov 6th 2012 11:02am
It's election day, of course, and with that comes some amount of civic pride among a number of voters. That's a good thing, for the most part, and in this era of social media and people sharing photos and videos about their lives, plenty of people are sharing imagery of their own ballot. Perfectly reasonable, right? Well, yes, except when that runs into laws designed to keep your ballots secret. There are, of course, good intentions behind such laws. But mixed in with all those local laws concerning camera usage inside a polling place are some that could cause trouble for people doing something quite ordinary. For example, it appears that people in Wisconsin who decide to Instagram/Tweet/Facebook an image of their ballots, have committed a class I felony, election fraud. And this doesn't appear to just be a law that the state is going to ignore either. It's been issuing warnings to people that they could face felony charges if they do post those photos. Undoubtedly, many will be unaware that they're committing election fraud when they thought they were just showing civic pride. One hopes that officials in Wisconsin, and other states, take the context into account before moving forward with any legal responses.
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