RE: What OVC does not address

From: Popkin, Laird (WMG Corp) <"Popkin,>
Date: Fri Apr 16 2004 - 16:11:47 CDT

I think that OVC advocating a particular voting mechanism is a very bad
idea. We should be an open voting system that can be used to collect votes
for and implements whatever election strategy the voters (or their
government) want. We don't want to alienate any potential users of OVC who
happen to like the traditional (in the US) election system.

Of course, once there's a flexible, trustworthy voting system in place, it's
much easier to implement flexible, trustworthy election mechanisms (e.g.
IRV), but I don't think that OVC should tackle the issue of advocating
changing the election laws -- it'll be plenty of work just getting people to
adopt OVC without that.

So while I like IRV, I think that the most effective course is for OVC to
focus only on making an open voting system, and let other organizations
(possibly with an overlap in membership) focus on changing election laws.

- LP

-----Original Message-----
From: owner-voting-project@afterburner.sonic.net
[mailto:owner-voting-project@afterburner.sonic.net]On Behalf Of Jeff
Almeida
Sent: Friday, April 16, 2004 3:12 PM
To: voting-project@lists.sonic.net
Subject: Re: [voting-project] What OVC does not address

Also Sprach Douglas W. Jones:

>I agree with this. No organization that aspires to be seen as
>a vendor can do more than support optional schemes and make it
>clear that they are available. When the vendors start
>suggesting changes to state law, we get into real trouble. This
>has happened frequently in the voting arena, most frequently in
>order to either exclude some other vendor or to lock in some
>vendor. We must not be seen as playing such a game.

But herein lies the rub: pluralities clearly DO NOT WORK. To the extent
that we're computing them, people will perceive that our system DOES NOT
WORK. All I'm advocating is a weighty disclaimer: if you're doing this,
change your system to SOMETHING ELSE. I agree completely it's not our
business to push them one way or another, but we need to defend against
the inevitable (been watching the hearings this week?) "Why didn't you
warn us this could happen?"

Practically speaking, it's no different than any other usage warning from
a technology vendor; sure, you can hook an unpatched, unfirewalled Windows
box with no anti-virus software directly to a cable modem and leave it
running unattended for months at a time, but it is strongly *NOT
RECOMMENDED*.

I also think it's hard to accuse us of trying to create lock-in as long as
statements remain in the realm of "Anything but THAT." There are plenty
of IRV advocates, etc. running around and frankly, I'm not one and I am in
complete agreement we shouldn't be pushing for it or anything else. My
whole point is people are relying on us for our expertise, and we fail
them if we choose not to mention that pluralities are worse than the vocal
stylings of William Hung.

jeff :)

-- 
************************************************************
Jeff D. "Spud (Zeppelin)" Almeida
Corinth, TX
spud@spudzeppelin.com
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Received on Fri Apr 30 23:17:09 2004

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