Re: [OVC-demo-team] Voting paper "trail"?!?

From: <laird_at_io_dot_com>
Date: Fri Mar 19 2004 - 00:48:13 CST

If you go to their web site
( , they explain that what
they're advocating is, in fact, voter verified paper trails, not receipts:

"All voting machines should produce a printout of each vote that could be
used to audit the computer count, conduct recounts when necessary and
otherwise serve as the backup system.  You’ve heard “store a hard copy?” 
Voters are shown the printout of his or her vote for review before leaving
the polling place, and the papers are saved by elections officials. 
“Voter verified paper trail” is the fancy name for this simple safeguard."

They also advocate at least slightly open software:

"Public election officials and their trusted technicians must be given
full access to the touchscreen software and hardware to verify the
sanctity of the voting process, prevent fraud and eliminate unintentional

Keep in mind that journalists boil everything down to what they think
everyone can understand, even if it's a gross oversimplification (i.e.
wrong). So when they quoted Ben Cohen saying "Just have the machine print
out a receipt, just like an ATM does" that was probably a "sound bite"
from an extensive conversation that the journalist didn't bother
reporting. I have been quoted in the press before, and they almost always
boil an interview down to some snippit that makes me sound like an idiot.
So I wouldn't be surprised if the same is happening to the "Computer Ate
My Vote" folks.

I think that instead of arguing (in the general public) that receipts are
bad, I'd suggest ignoring that issue, and treating this effort as an
endorsement of what we're doing, because _it is_.

> Hello all,
> I have been hearing quite a bit about our project of late and feel the
> need to rant. Please put up with me for this one really off demo-topic
> post.
> <rant>
> I keep getting these e-mails that suggest it's it is a great idea
> getting a receipt for your vote, they reference stories like this:
... snip ...
> -Fred-
> --
> Fred McLain, OVC-Demo Team Lead
> mclain ()
> Everything should be made as simple as possible, but no simpler - Albert
> Einstein.
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Received on Thu Apr 1 02:40:29 2004

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