On October 2nd, Facebook pages “Dzala Simartleshia” [The Power Lies in Truth] and NewsWall.ge published a photo featuring the logo of the research organization ‘Edison Research,’ claiming that according to the survey published at 16:00, the “Georgian Dream” takes the lead by 46%, followed by the “United National Movement” by 27%, and “For Georgia” by 7%. In addition, NewsWall.ge stated that the survey was commissioned by ‘TV formula.
The survey, published in the name of “Edison Research,” is false since the organization has not issued a survey of this kind. Not to mention, the Georgian Law prohibits the announcement of public opinion polls on the election day until the completion of the voting procedure.
“Edison Research” did not publish a new survey as of October 2nd at 16:00. While it is true that “TV Formula” has commissioned Edison Research to conduct a survey, the results will only be announced at 20:00, after finalizing the voting process.
On September 27th, “TV Formula” published the results of a pre-election poll conducted by Edison Research, which provides the respondents’ answer to the question – who would you vote if the local elections were held today? However, the aforementioned survey results differ from the posts published by “Dzala Simartleshia” and NewsWall.ge. According to the authentic survey, the “Georgian Dream” gets 36% of the votes, the United National Movement – 27%, and the “For Georgia – 11%.
Paragraph 5 of Article 50 of the Election Code of Georgia prohibits the coverage of the results of public opinion polls related to elections 48 prior to the voting and before 20:00 of the voting day.
“5. It is prohibited to publish public opinion poll results with regard to the elections, except for the possible number of voters in elections and the number of voters participating in elections on polling day, within 48 hours before polling day and until 20:00 of that day. From the day of calling elections until the publication of final results of elections by the CEC and during one month thereafter, the following shall be indicated when publishing public opinion poll results with regard to elections: the person ordering the poll (name according to public or electoral registration and legal address if a legal entity or a state body has ordered the public opinion poll; and first name, last name, and address according to a Georgian citizen’s identity card if an individual has ordered the public opinion poll), whether the poll is paid or free of charge, the organisation conducting the public opinion poll (name according to public or electoral registration and legal address), date of the poll, methods used, exact formulation of the questions put in the poll, possible margin of errors.”
Apart from the fabricated data, NewsWall.ge creates the impression that by disseminating the public opinion survey results, “Formula TV” has violated the Election Code of Georgia.
About the Sources
NewsWall.ge – is a personal Facebook account with 54 thousand subscribers and has published only two posts since 2017. Until 2017, the account had been actively sharing articles from the newswall.ge domain, although the website is no longer available.
The Facebook page “Dzala Simartleshia” was created on August 14th, 2018. The page predominantly publishes discrediting posts against the opposition and the election observation organization ISFED. In September 2020, the page sponsored a post to discredit the former ruling party, the UNM, and its individual members.
“Dzala Simartleshia” has disseminated a fabricated quote in the name of the United National Member, Eka Kherkheulidze. For more, see our article:
Facebook Page Spreading Fabricated Quote in the Name of a UNM Member
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