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Canadians are hitting the polls — and they have the selfies to prove it

WATCH: Canadians encourage their family and friends to vote by sharing their voter selfies.

Canadians went to the polls on Monday to decide which party will form the next government of Canada.

As the day progressed, more and more people shared their #VoterSelfies on social media, encouraging friends and families to get to the polls.

READ MORE: Canada election: Here’s what you need to know to vote

However, Elections Canada warned voters that pictures with ballots are strictly prohibited.

“The vote is secret,” the agency said on its website. “If people were allowed to show how they voted, they could be forced to vote in a certain way or votes could be bought.”

According to Elections Canada, you can take a selfie with poll signs, but you should avoid snapping pics anywhere near the ballot boxes.

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“If you’re enthusiastic about voting and want to share your experience with your friends, take a photo of yourself outside the polling station,” the agency said.

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The pictures are inspiring, with many of them depicting excited first-time voters, including 18-year-olds and new citizens.

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Even some of the federal party leaders got in on the trend.

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Roughly 4.7 million Canadians voted early

New numbers released by Elections Canada last week found voter turnout during the four-day advance polling period was up 29 per cent over numbers recorded during the last federal election in 2015.

According to Elections Canada, preliminary figures show 4.7 million electors turned out to vote between Oct. 11 and Oct. 14.

READ MORE: Real-time results in Canadian election

Over the four-day early voting period during the previous election, a total of 3.65 million Canadians voted, representing 20.8 per cent of all votes cast.

In a previous interview with Global News, CEO of Ipsos Public Affairs Darrell Bricker said advance polling numbers have been “going up steadily” for some time.

“In 2006, about 10 per cent of us voted early. In 2015, it was up to 20 per cent of us voting early,” he said. “It’s just been a general trend. I don’t know that it’s necessarily specifically related to this campaign.”

Timelapse of Global News’ Decision Canada Election night set
Timelapse of Global News’ Decision Canada Election night set

Bricker said, however, that parties have been getting “much better at getting out their vote early” and that the numbers may be, in part, a reflection of that.

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He added that it is too early to know whether the increase is indicative of an increasing level of interest in the election.

“It could be,” he said. “But we won’t know until after the election.”

How many seats does a party need to win?

A party needs 170 seats in Parliament in order to win a majority government.

A minority government is won by a party that gets fewer than 170 seats but still has more seats than any other party.

Real-time results

Global News will have live, real-time election results for all 338 ridings as polls begin to close across the country, starting with results in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Polls close at 8:30 p.m. local time in Atlantic Canada, 9:30 p.m. local time in Quebec and Ontario, 7:30 p.m. Mountain Time and 8:30 p.m. Central Time in the Prairies and Alberta, and 7 p.m. local time in British Columbia.

We will have live results by party and province, so you can see who will be representing your riding. Find out who will form the next Canadian government and who won in your riding.

Read the Global News guide to the election in the following languages:

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— With files from Global News Staff

 

Meghan.Collie@globalnews.ca

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