Fake Twitter ads tell voters they can vote by text

Cobb County residents file into the Cobb County Civic Center for early voting Saturday In Marietta, GA, October 29, 2016. At least 2000 people are expected to participate in the early voting there Saturday. STEVE SCHAEFER / SPECIAL TO THE AJC

In late October, rumors began circulating that Americans could vote in the 2016 election via text message.

To be clear, you cannot vote by text message. You must report to a polling place to vote on Nov. 8.

Telling people they can vote by text could be illegal, but that didn’t stop some Twitter users from spreading misinformation.

This week, the fake ads began circulating widely on Twitter and other social media platforms. No fewer than four ads mocked up to look like official communications from Hillary Clinton’s campaign began making the rounds. Some of the ads featured Clinton’s campaign logo and said “paid for by Hillary for President.”

One ad had a picture of a black woman, another ad was written in Spanish in what seemed to be attempts to confuse minority and non-English speaking voters.

The Washington Post reported that one Twitter user in particular, @TheRickyVaughn seemed to fuel the upswing in shares of the fake ads by tweeting them out with hashtag #ImWithHer. The user’s account has since been suspended.

On Tuesday, another Twitter user @mcnees aka Robert McNees reported the fake ads to Twitter support and was told it did not violate their policy:

About five hours later, Twitter had a different response for McNees:

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey told McNees the issue had been fixed, but while some of the accounts that shared the ads were suspended, the Post reports that others were still posting on Thursday morning.

The issue has raised questions about a number of unusual election day practices such as monitoring of polling places, reports that voters can change their votes, vote swapping across state lines (which is legal but operates on an honor system) and machines that appear to be flipping votes.

Read more: State looking at reports of more Georgia vote machines ‘flipping’ votes

According to a recent report from NBC News, the election day meddling could grow much larger by Tuesday.

American officials told NBC News, the U.S. government believes hackers from Russia or other countries could launch cyberattacks to undermine the presidential election.

The White House and the Department of Homeland Security, are coordinating the effort to combat any such attacks and officials have informed Russia that any attempts to interfere with voting or vote counting would be considered a major breach.

For up-to-date information on the 2016 election, visit the AJC’s Atlanta Voter Guide to the 2016 election.

 

Reader Comments 0

20 comments
David Williamson
David Williamson

For those who think they're helping make history by voting a woman in as president, you're making a mistake. I would be the first to say that a woman could run this country as good as any man but not this one. She is evil. We've all hated Obama care and if you think she's going to change it your crazy. Take a look at how Obama and his administration has wasted millions in tax dollars campaigning for her. They have an agreement to keep things in place and things are going to get worse. Trump has great business ethics and a since of fair trade. He has an awesome cabinet in place to help him. Hillary has her own hand picked Supreme Court judges to set her free on allegations if impeached. Clintons are closely connected to the Muslim nation for a reason to allow them to come in and run this country. Look back to when you were younger. Ever see as many here and now there every where. Gas stations hotels grocery stores etc. long plan drawn out. Very intelligent people. Clinton is supporting them coming into country. It's not a race issue. Although Obama administration has tried to set it up as one. America take America back. It's not going to get better if she is elected. Give trump a chance. If in four years he hasn't made a change we can vote him out. With Hillary we want last another four years. Not counting are 2nd amendment rights gone.

Dona Elaine Hubbs
Dona Elaine Hubbs

Bahaahaaa. Guess we'll see who the REAL low information, poorly educated voters are.

HokeSmyth
HokeSmyth

 If "Corruption" was a color, Crayola's newest color would be called "Hillary" 

Jana Marie Nation
Jana Marie Nation

The real tragedy is THE ONES WHO BELIEVED IT!? Goes to show that many will believe everything they hear and do what they are told whether right or wrong! #TrumpPence

David W. Floden
David W. Floden

Lighten up; they could actually get excited and vote twice. Once by ballot on November 8th and then by texting on November 9th( if it was the same post I saw).

Latesha Green
Latesha Green

Lol if anyone fell for this they do not need to vote

Latesha Green
Latesha Green

Lol anyone who fell for this is just dumb. Trump or Hillary they are special needs.

JoeBobJoe
JoeBobJoe

Sorry if the twitter ads are wrong.  Republicans vote Tuesday, Nov 8th and Demorats vote Wednesday, Nov 9th. 

Max Brill
Max Brill

If you believe this perhaps you shouldn't vote, morons.

Christy Marie Davis
Christy Marie Davis

I'm in Missouri and got a text today saying I could vote by text message and it would only take 5 mins. Very weird.

Michael Venters
Michael Venters

I can't wait till this election is over I hope Hillary Clinton wins and all the Trumpies go rogue and then get killed by law enforcement.....oh they won't since they are white

Jeremy Wilson
Jeremy Wilson

I hope all the smack talking blacks actually try to man up and bang with the police and gun owning white people when trump wins.

Michael Venters
Michael Venters

Jeremy Wilson I hope the white militia wanna be Trumpies go to war with the govt when he loses and I hope the govt treats them like police treat black people

Ellis De
Ellis De

A trump presidency would be adventurous

Jay Smallwood
Jay Smallwood

I hope El Hillary wins we need a little rebellion so we can cut down on assclowns like you...why dont you grow some balls and show your real face?