As Election Day approaches and folks make use of early voting and mail-in ballot opportunities, our social media feeds are flooded with countless images of people heading to the polls and posing with their ballots. But as innocent of a trend as that may seem to be, taking a selfie with your ballot is actually illegal in certain states.
To be clear: you're allowed to snap a picture of and with a sealed envelope but it is illegal to show off your marked ballot because it might lead to vote challenges, for example.
Specific laws differ by state, as do the repercussions of a potential offense. In Tennessee, for example, selfie ballots could cost citizens up to 30 days in jail and a $50 fine.
Certain states have recently been taking the popularity of social media into account and have changed their laws. In California, Colorado, Hawaii, Nebraska, Oregon and Utah, for example, the local governments have passed legislation to actually allow voters to snap and publish photos with their marked ballots.
"The explosion of social media and 'selfie' culture has also challenged the traditional thinking that voters should not disclose how they voted," writes the National Conference of State Legislatures in reaction to the mentioned states' change in rulings. "Many young people, who share everything on social media, find it logical that they should be able to share a photo of their voted ballot with friends and followers. 'Get-out-the-vote' organizations also find posting these 'ballot selfies' to be a motivating factor for younger people to participate in the voting process."
Below, we list the states where ballot selfies are allowed, where they're prohibited and where rules are a bit murky.
States where ballot selfies are allowed:
District of Columbia
States where ballot selfies are illegal:
States where ballot selfie rules are murky: