Election officers in Sonoma County, Calif., requested the broader social media group on Friday to assist them rebut a false report about mail-in ballots within the county.
After receiving telephone calls from constituents claiming they noticed on-line footage of mail-in ballots in a landfill, the county posted a message on its foremost Twitter account alerting residents and different Twitter customers that a false report was circulating. The image confirmed 2018 election supplies that had been despatched out for recycling, as state legislation permits, the county mentioned.
County officers mentioned they weren’t certain of the origin of the false report, however by Friday it had been picked up by some conservative media outlets on Twitter. Conservatives and President Trump have recently seized on news reports of issues with mail-in ballots, such as nine that were found to have been discarded in a northeastern Pennsylvania county.
Sonoma County’s post underscored the difficulties that local election officials face in combating misinformation in the final six weeks before the Nov. 3 election. With the local news media in crisis across the nation, fighting misinformation largely falls on area officials, who are already stretched thin to meet the demands of the most complex election in decades.
For officials on the front lines in Sonoma, correcting the record as quickly as possible was paramount.
“I think we wanted to be proactive and make sure that people got the information from us, because we did hear from some concerned citizens,” said Deva Marie Proto, the county registrar of voters in Sonoma County.