Internet Voting and Democracy Conference
Richard D. Friedman
rdfrdman at UMICH.EDU
Tue Jun 20 20:05:08 PDT 2000
At 01:56 PM 06/20/2000 -0700, Mark Scarberry wrote:
>It is interesting that the announcement of the conference assumes that
>voting will be moving to the internet. Perhaps the announcement was not
>intended to be understood that way, but isn't there a very serious
>question whether that should happen? Or perhaps several serious questions:
>voter fraud, hacking of voting websites, differential access to the
>internet among different social groups, etc.
There's also some loss of community, which is not trivial in the Age of
"Bowling Alone". Joining others at the polling place, signing in and
voting in each others' presence, is one of the few activities that we do
with our neighbors, or at least some of them. It carries an emotional
weight, as an affirmation of democracy, that I don't think voting at home
will have; it's sure had impact on me whenever I've gone to a polling
place, ever since accompanying my parents when I was a young child. On the
other hand, it carries one enormous potential benefit -- that it may result
in more people voting.
University of Michigan Law School
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