E&R Clears CC Representative of Excessive Spending Charge on Snapchat Geofilter

A complainant estimated that Michael Sitver spent $1,820.70 on a Snapchat geofilter. Sitver shared receipts with E&R showing that he spent only $56.98.

By Sonia Schlesinger

Confusion over the geographical range of a candidate’s promotional Snapchat filter prompted a complaint to the Elections and Rules (E&R) Committee that was resolved yesterday night.

The E&R Committee met Monday night to discuss accusations against Michael Sitver, a Class of 2019 College Council candidate, for spending more than the limit of $100. Voting in this year’s SG election began today.

The complainant estimated that Sitver spent $1,820.70 on a Snapchat geofilter reading “I’m Voting Sitver to Fix Student Gov.” To estimate this price, the complainant calculated on Snapchat’s website that the geofilter would be active from 2 a.m. on May 2 to midnight on May 4 covering most of campus.

Sitver, who was present at the meeting, sent his receipts for the geofilter to the E&R Committee in response to the allegation. He had purchased filters to run from midnight on May 1 to 1 a.m. on May 4 to cover about half of Regenstein Library, one-third of Mansueto Library, Arley D. Cathey Dining Commons and Granville-Grossman Residential Commons. The price for coverage of these locations totaled $56.98. The committee voted unanimously that Sitver’s expenditures do not constitute overspending.

Following the decision, the Committee briefly discussed complaints from some fourth-year students who are not allowed to vote. The voting restriction applies to students on extended status who are not taking classes. The registrar provides the list of eligible students to the Committee and these students do not appear on the list because they are not registered for classes. Chairman of the Committee, second-year Max Freedman, explained that it will not be possible to include these students in this year’s election but that the Committee hopes to work with students on the issue in the future.

Another E&R hearing is scheduled tomorrow to investigate an alleged violation of Article II Section 8 of the Election Code which pertains to compliance with local, state, and federal law.