Facebook inspired around 100,000 young Brits to apply to vote in a single day by pushing an alert at them through its platform, The Times reports.
The alert, sent out last Friday, encouraged UK citizens under 45 to register for a ballot paper in the EU referendum before the midnight deadline on June 7.
155,000 people under 45 applied to vote on the day the alert was sent out, more than three times as many as the days either side, according to The Times, which reports that three out of every five vote applications on Friday were generated through Facebook.
Polls suggest that the majority of people under the age of 45 are in favour of staying in the EU — so Facebook may have given the Remain campaign a vital boost, as it looks like the vote will go down to the wire.
Emma Hartley, head of campaigns at the Electoral Commission, reportedly “encouraged” Facebook to send the alert.
In terms of who applied to vote last Friday, The Times reports the following figures:
- 52,000 people aged 18 to 24
- 68,000 people aged 25 to 34
- 35,000 people aged 35 to 44
The majority of voters under 43 want the UK to remain in the EU, while most people over that age are in favour of a Brexit, according to an analysis of YouGov figures by The Times.
Elsewhere, Twitter is introducing referendum-themed emojis in a bid to remind people to register to vote.
The EU referendum takes place on June 23.