The Star in Nairobi reports that Kenya’s Communication Commission (CCK) has put in place guidelines to control political campaign text messages in order to gate-keep any hate speech disseminated.
According to new rules, mobile operators will be responsible for filtering messages being transmitted through their networks.
Political parties are only allowed to deliver messages to customers who have subscribed for the service and then only through third party Content Service Providers (short code texts).
The article makes reference to the CCK website and specifically “the guidelines for prevention of transmission of undesirable bulk political messages via cellular mobile networks.”
“CSPs shall not send unsolicited Political Messages to customers who have not subscribed for the service. Such opt in will require the express consent of the recipients and opt-out procedures must be clearly notified to customers and kept functional at all times,” claims the site.
The regulator has also stipulated that any messages should be sent in English or Kiswahili and only between 8am and 6pm.
The Star states that the guidelines have been drafted in consultation with operators and various bodies including CSPs, the National Cohesion and Integration Committee, the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission and the Registrar of Political Parties.