Thursday, November 09, 2006

Electronic Voting, the Wave of the Future

Washington, DC is in the dark ages when it comes to voting methods. We still do paper ballots AND the pencils they give us don't have erasers. What's up with that? If you make a mistake (as I did once) you can't erase the line you've accidentally drawn in. No, you have to shamefacedly go to the ballot clerk, admit your error and ask for a new ballot.

So while some jurisdictions are worry about electronic systems and fraud, I'm hoping that at some point we might be able to get erasers. Is that too much to ask?

The thing is that the next generation is going to be far more comfortable with an electronic system -- many of them probably haven't even SEEN a pencil. A recent article in the Washington Post bears this out. In "Young VA Voters Go High Tech," Tara Bahrampour tells the story of a student government election at an Arlington elementary school that was done entirely by computer (only kindergartners, who probably wouldn't be able to read the ballot, were given paper ballots with pictures). Most students agreed that it was much easier and less confusing than the old way.

How likely do you think they will be to tolerate our old-fashioned paper ballots? I think a revolution is afoot!

No comments: