Snapchat users urged to register to vote in General Election


A Snapchat filter urging users to 'find your voice' has appeared on the app to entice young adults to register to vote before the looming deadline.

The Electoral Commission partnered with the disappearing-image sharing app to release a "bespoke geofilter" for Britain's 10 million daily users on Wednesday, reminding them to "register to vote by 22nd May", alongside a graphic of a ballot box and a pink voting slip.

Snapchat filter that is urging users to "find your voice", which has appeared on the app to entice young adults to register to vote before the looming deadline.

The app's mainly younger users are being encouraged to apply the filter - which relies on a users' location to be posted - on their selfies and send to friends to "ensure their voices are heard" in the June 8 General Election.

The filter appears on all users' apps regardless of age, prompting ineligible teenagers to register before they turn 18.

Craig Westwood, director of communications at the Electoral Commission, said: "Snapchat has a huge audience amongst young adults, a group we know are less likely to be registered to vote.

"By working with them we can get this important message across in a new way and help ensure fewer people lose the chance to cast their vote.

"If you're not registered to vote by the deadline of 22 May, then you won't be able to have your say.

"We're urging anyone not yet registered to do so as soon as possible."

Snapchat's users tend to be young, with more than half (51%) aged 18-34, according to digital market research firm Verto Analytics.

Research by the Commission showed a dramatic gap between young people signed up to vote and older people, with almost one-third (30%) of adults under 34 not registered, compared with only 4% of over-55s.

Turnout among 18-24 year olds in recent elections has fluctuated, with less than half (43%) casting their vote in 2015, compared with 44% in 2010 and 37% in 2005.

This comes as it was revealed Facebook could play an influential role in the outcome of the June 8 poll, in line with the impact it had on the Brexit vote last June, and the US election in November.

Similar tactics were employed by the Commission during the Scottish council elections in early May, with a Snapchat filter created for the occasion.

Presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton released a geofilter ahead of last November's US polls, which allowed users to morph into the candidate.

Registration takes five minutes online.

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