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2013年8月 5日 (月)

ネット選挙解禁 功罪を検証し政治に生かせ

The Yomiuri Shimbun August 5, 2013
Benefits of online campaigning should be closely examined
ネット選挙解禁 功罪を検証し政治に生かせ(8月4日付・読売社説)

The ban on the Internet’s use in election campaigning was lifted starting with the House of Councillors election in July. What were the advantages and disadvantages of using this campaign method?
 7月の参院選で解禁されたインターネット利用の選挙運動は、どんな功罪があったのか。

All parties must examine these points and consider how to encourage the public to participate more in politics.
各政党はその点を十分検証し、国民の政治参加のあり方を考えてもらいたい。

In the upper house election, political parties and candidates placed a great deal of emphasis on sending such information as election platforms, profile data, stumping photos and video messages to the electorate through websites, blogs and other means.
 参院選で、各政党や候補者はホームページやブログを通じ、公約やプロフィル、遊説写真、動画などの情報発信に力を入れた。

As for social networking services, which allow senders and recipients to communicate interactively, the Liberal Democratic Party mainly employed Facebook, while New Komeito and the Japanese Communist Party used LINE and Twitter, respectively, as new campaign tools.
 発信者と受け手の双方向性を持つソーシャル・ネットワーキング・サービス(SNS)では、自民党が主にフェイスブック、公明党はLINE(ライン)、共産党はツイッターなどをそれぞれ駆使した運動を展開した。

The volume of information available to voters during the campaign period increased significantly.
 選挙中に有権者が得られる情報量は、格段に増加した。

However, online campaigning appeared to have had a limited effect on the election outcome.
 ただし、その効果は、限定的であったと言えよう。

In exit polls The Yomiuri Shimbun conducted on the polling day, those who said they checked online to decide who to vote for averaged only 11 percent of people who cast their ballots in the election. The corresponding figure for voters in their 20s was no more than 24 percent.
 投開票日の読売新聞の出口調査では、ネット情報を参考にしたと答えた人は、わずか11%だった。20歳代でも24%にとどまった。

Voter turnout overall was lower than in the previous upper house election.
 全体の投票率も低下した。

This means that the main aim of online campaigning--getting young people interested in politics and having them go to the polls--failed to materialize.
 有権者とくに若者の関心を高め、投票所に足を運ばせるという狙い通りには行かなかった。

A major factor behind this may be that the parties and candidates were more or less working in the dark when they were campaigning online, mainly because they did not seem to have a good command of the Internet.
 背景には、各党や候補者がまだ手探りの段階で、ネットを使いこなせなかったことがあろう。

Meager information

Information posted online generally was limited to such items as time schedules of stumping tours and videos of speeches on the street, while information about policies and policy discussions among the parties was sparse.
発信内容も、遊説日程の告知や街頭演説の動画にとどまり、政策に関する訴えや議論は少なかった。

The dearth of policy discussions in online campaigning might be due partly to fears that clarifying positions concerning policies on such issues as nuclear power generation over which voters’ views are divided sharply could have incurred what is called “flaming,” a flood of criticism and counterarguments.
 原子力発電所問題など賛否が大きく分かれる政策を掲げると、批判や反論が集中する、いわゆる「炎上」を招きかねない。そんな警戒感もあったようだ。

There were no instances of such malicious cases as impersonating candidates or tampering with their websites, which had been feared with the introduction of online campaigning, according to the National Police Agency.
 一方、警察庁によると、懸念された候補者の「なりすまし」やホームページ改ざんといった悪質な選挙違反の摘発はゼロだった。

It also should be noted in this connection that a safety-first approach was taken in the online campaigning. Various restrictions were imposed, such as a ban on the use of e-mail for electioneering purposes by anyone except the parties and candidates.
 政党と候補者以外の一般有権者には電子メールでの投票呼びかけを認めないなど、今回は制度面で安全運転を期したのも事実だ。

To ensure fair campaigning, it is imperative to prevent illegal actions, so measures to that end must be implemented continuously.
 公正な選挙を実施するうえで、違法行為を防止することが必要だ。そのための手だては、引き続き講じていかねばならない。

However, there were some cases in which slanderous and defamatory messages were directed at certain candidates. More enlightened use of online campaign tools is indispensible.
 特定の候補者に対して誹謗(ひぼう)中傷が集中する事例はあちこちで起きた。節度ある利用についての啓発活動も欠かせない。

It has been pointed out that the distinction between what is lawful and unlawful under the Public Offices Election Law is unclear in regard to online campaigning, making the system a bit of a mystery to many voters. Both the ruling and opposition camps should consider ways to resolve the ambiguity of online campaign methods from a legal point of view.
 ネットによる選挙運動は、公職選挙法上の合法と違法の線引きがあいまいで、有権者にとって分かりにくいとの指摘もあった。与野党は、法律面でも、改善策を検討する必要がある。

Use of the Internet in campaigning will most likely be expanded to local elections, bringing politics closer to voters than ever before.
 地方選でも今後、ネットの利用が拡大していくだろう。
有権者にとってより身近な選挙となる。

All parties and candidates must use their ingenuity to determine how to use online campaigning in the best way possible.
各政党や候補者は、利用の仕方に一層知恵を絞らねばなるまい。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Aug. 4, 2013)
(2013年8月4日01時22分  読売新聞)

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