James Jimenez, spokesperson of the Commission on Elections, challenged Filipino content creators on TikTok to partner with the agency in crafting a voter registration campaign for the youth.
Jimenez, also the director of the Education and Information Department of Comelec, was reacting to an international news report of CNN International when he made the dare.
The report featured TikTok creators on the United States who launched such a campaign to reach more voters for their presidential election this November.
The campaign, “Tok the Vote,” is reportedly the first nationwide voter registration campaign on the video-sharing social networking service.
Organizers were hoping that the videos reach potential eligible voters before the registration finally closes.
The coalition was reported to convene more than 300 content creators across the states with a combined audience of over 20 million viewers.
The content creators are supposed to include the website link www.tokthevote.com to their TikTok bios. The website is using the United States’ voter registration tool.
“COVID-19 has presented a huge barrier to voter registration, with in-person events canceled, and the youth vote is hit the hardest by proms, graduations, and other registration opportunities being called off,” Colton Hess, the founder of the “Tok the Vote,” was quoted as saying.
“We need to meet these potential voters where they are—on TikTok—and encourage creators who they feel like they know and trust to connect them with the information and resources they need,” he added.
Jimenez, who retweeted the news report, in response said: “I can only hope Filipino Tokkers take the initiative to do something like this. Partner with @comelec. I’m sure we can work something out. Dare.”
— James Jimenez (@jabjimenez) September 11, 2020
A Twitter user tagged another online user and the account of an organization aiming to mobilize the Filipino youth through responsible voting called Every Boto Counts.
“Spox, help namin kayo (diyan) w/ @everybotocounts @Sesamehh r u ready? hahahaha,” he wrote.
Jimenez welcomed the initiative and said that they could “talk about it soon.”
Voter registration in the Philippines that reopened this month will last until September 30 next year.
Comelec offices will be open from Tuesdays to Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. to accommodate eligible Filipinos.
The next national polls is slated in May 2022, when a new president is expected to be elected.
Meanwhile, TikTok is one of the most popular apps used by young people, including the Philippines.
It is also used by local celebrities with huge following such as Maine Mendoza, Bela Padilla, Jodi Sta. Maria and the MayWard love team, among others.
Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles and presidential spokesperson Harry Roque are also some of the public officials who have accounts on the video-sharing platform.
TikTok is a Chinese-made mobile application that enables users to express themselves through songs, filters and special effects as enhanced by artificial intelligence.
It lets people upload and share short videos while at the same time, foster connections and gain friends.