May 2, 2011 8:23 pm

Twitter users ignore #elxn41 warning: Atlantic Canada results come out early on social media

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Atlantic Canada is the first region for polls to close and also the first area of the country to break rules about tweeting results.

As broadcasters started reporting numbers, Twitter users immediately began posting the numbers, despite an Elections Canada warning not to spread results across the country before all polls closed.

It’s been a contentious issue in a time of social media, when information flashes around the world in a heartbeat.

Social media monitors at the Dalhousie University Media Lab, are watching online interactions for Global News.

Anotoliy Gruzd, one of the monitors Monday night, says sites such as Twitter and Facebook have really engaged young voters, but at the same time not everyone wants to hold back on getting the news out there.

“It’s interesting,” Gruzd told Global News, “because users from Atlantic Canada are asking their friends in Australia to post the results.”

Unofficial results for Newfoundland and Labrador, which has a half-hour jump on the rest of the region, are pretty much all available now.

Although it gave the warning not to tweet, Elections Canada has said it will only investigate people posting results on social media sites if complaints are made.

Those that break the law could face of $25,000.

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