Political parties get Line app accounts

Kyodo

Smartphone messaging company Line Corp. said Monday 10 political parties have opened official accounts for its Line messaging application before their Internet-based election campaigns start this summer.

If Line app users add accounts of political parties to their friends, they may get these parties’ policy and campaign information in the form of texts, pictures and videos. The parties may be allowed to receive opinions and requests from users.

The Line app offers a free chatting and calling service and has a user base of 45 million in Japan, the company said.

The 10 parties are the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, the Democratic Party of Japan, Nippon Ishin no Kai (Japan Restoration Party), New Komeito, Your Party, Seikatsu no To (People’s Life Party), the Japanese Communist Party, the Social Democratic Party, the Green Wind party and the New Renaissance Party.

Line will offer free account services to political parties until the House of Councilors election, expected in July, and will consider switching to paid services after the election.

Corporations use official Line accounts and pay at least ¥10 million per three months