Scott E’s Blog was notified of the complaint via email. The compliant was made by a member of the community that had concerns about the use of imagery of a local school logo used in a campaign mailer from Jen Mallo. Here is a copy that mailer that I have been sent:

You can clearly (or somewhat clearly if you are old like me) see the Centennial High School logo in the back of the far right photo.

Now I have a feeling that this was not done on purpose or maliciously…but it was done and sent to many people in District 4 (based on what I have been told) in a campaign mailer for office.

The school system responded to the complaint in the following way: “Thank you for reaching out to us and bringing this to our attention. We have reviewed the campaign literature and have addressed this with the candidate and asked that they adhere to the guidance provided in the circular and no longer use the referenced picture.”

Here is a copy of the noted “Circular” reference in the response:

I asked HCPSS was this response related to bullet point #2 in the circular…here is what I got back: “Scott, that is correct. The circular applies to all political activities regardless of race or issue.”

I also asked “To your knowledge have any other candidates been warned or asked to not use photos or images in campaign material this election cycle?” and this was the response I received: “Yes, other candidates in the past have often used photos or videos taken on school property. As item #2 in the circular states, “A person may not use any Board of Education property or symbol (e.g. logo, signage) in any political campaign material or activities if the impression given is one of endorsement by the school or school system. ” As with this particular photo, we have advised candidates not to use any media captured on school property even if it doesn’t explicitly imply endorsement.”

This should be a learning moment for all candidates running for office…be careful what you share online or in mailers. Not everything is allowed…be knowledgeable about the rules before putting your campaign materials together.

On the other hand…other than being told you can not use a photo going forward I am not sure really what a big deal this is for the school system in the big scheme of things…as you can see that no real penalties exist per their response.

You can make that determination as a candidate…and as a voter how big a deal this is for you.

Scott E

5 COMMENTS

  1. Scott, with all due respect, please focus on something other than trashing Jennifer Mallo. Shame on you! How about posting Information about the recently settled lawsuit against the HCPSS on sexual discrimination. All you have to do is file a MPIA. Given your propensity for digging, how about digging into topics that don’t shine a positive light on Christina Delmont-Small and Republican candidates? Just how much did that settlement cost Howard County taxpayers.

    Will you delete this comment, too?

    • Wow…Ann…come on now…all I did was report out on an issue that the HCPSS weighed in on…not sure how that is wrong. I knew about this items for days…did nothing with it until HCPSS weighed in on it…at that point it became a thing. If you have other stories you think I should follow up on please email me the details at scott@scotteblog.com.

  2. I don’t see why this is made into a big thing !!!

    This is equal to going 32mph in a 30 mph zone.

    All of the things facing HoCo taxpayers/citizens now and in the future, this is nothing.
    (For the record, I really don’t care who wins a seat on the BofE)

  3. Ann and Old Timer, Can you two back off for a minute and stop harassing Scottie! Shhesh, are you the new HOCO shaming committee? All the man has done is rightly show that this BOE candidate was caught flouting the election rules and was given a wrist slap for that. Personally if it were up to me it would be much more than that, given the recent use or should I say misuse of office for own political agendas or gain HOCO has been seeing lately.

    Ultimately it will be the people to decide whether that imagery of her and her useful idiots sways them to vote one way or another. But I am against any sort of independent media intimidation or threats from political cheerleaders, financiers, developers and special interest groups. Go bark up another tree..
    Scottie, stand tall brother. You shouldnt have even dignified Ann’s tirade and vengeful errands with a reply. C’mon man, you better than that. Wrestling in the mud with pigs you know you cant come out clean.

  4. My comment was not meant to attack Scott. Scott does a great job.

    I was commenting about people complaining about a partially visible logo in a photo. I speculate of the thousand people that looked at the photo, none noticed it or thought twice about it.

    Again, all of the problems facing HoCo citizens for the next 2 yrs, this infraction is very, very minor.

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