[nSLUG] HRM wants to try online voting

Ashley George ashley at george.ca
Tue Jan 13 22:26:21 AST 2004


Hi Jeff,

Apparently the system they plan to use is the one from
http://www.canvote.ca.  There is little information on the site.

I also wrote a letter to my local councillor.

Ashley

On Tue, Jan 13, 2004 at 09:15:42PM -0400, Jeff Warnica wrote:
> 
> Well, at least one councillor anyway.
> 
> In todays Daily News there is a (short, it is the Daily News...) report
> on one HRM Councillor who wants the city to go for an online election.
> It points out that a recent act was passed by the province that allows
> for municipalities to try "alternate" election methods.
> 
> I encourage all of you to write to your respective councillor and voice
> an opinion, whatever it is. Not email. Dead tree style.
> 
> Personally, given that HRM IT people seem incapable of running pdf2html
> on their bus schedules, I doubt that they could pull off an online
> election "in house". Unlikely that they would try, but "sending it to
> staff to investigate" (which is standard fair for HRM) will not return
> particularly competent opinions.
> 
> But assuming it could be done inhouse, or outsourced, there are
> obviously issues about the quality of the systems that they will use.
> Elections should be both authenticated and anonymous, transparent, and
> audit-able.
> 
> The current (paper) system can be understood by anyone. I don't think
> any kind of automated system could be made simple enough to be
> understood by just anyone... The standard that (should) applies to
> patents might be more reasonable: the system should be understandable by
> people leaned in that field.
> 
> While I will encourage the city to try and use an Open Source solution,
> I know of none that currently exists. Open source or not, I will be
> asking the city that any solution being offered have the source made
> available to be audited by at least 2 independent people of the cities
> choosing... OSS shouldn't get a free ride just because someone /could/
> audit it, an audit should happen, guaranteeing that someone actually
> /did/ look at it. OSS projects obviously have nothing to hide, and it
> may be difficult to find a combination of closed source companies
> willing to "show their cards" even under NDAs, and consultants willing
> to sign such NDA (and thus loose their "virginity").
> 
> 
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