Speed Reads

Bad directions

Voters in 5 states receive texts with misleading polling locations

Movement Labs, a company that facilitates political text message campaigns, took responsibility for accidentally sending voters in five states messages with erroneous instructions for voting. 

The messages included incorrect directions for the recipient's polling place that appeared tailored to the voters' location. Voters received messages from the group Voting Futures that identified supposed polling locations by name and address, per NBC News

The secretaries of state in Kansas and New Jersey warned their constituents that some voters had received messages with directions to the wrong polling location. They clarified that the texts did not come from their offices. 

Movement Labs, the company behind the messages, released a statement on their website on Monday taking responsibility for sending the incorrect messages, stating that it took "full responsibility for these mistakes and have issued correction texts."

The statement explains that the company sent the messages to voters in Kansas, New Jersey, Illinois, North Carolina, and Virginia on behalf of text campaign clients Voto Latino, Black Voters Matter, and Voting Futures.

Movement Labs founder Yoni Landau assured it was not their intention to confuse voters. "In some of our texts, we sent addresses and images of drop-box locations when we intended only to include in-person early vote locations," he said. "We didn't specify in our text that we were trying to encourage voters to vote early. Some voters familiar with their election day location thought we were telling them to vote on election day at an early vote location."