07-17-12, 09:55 PM #1
Washington state to unveil voter registration on Facebook
Online voter registration sounds like a good start to me. But I would guess we are still a few years away from voting online?
State is believed to be first to offer voter signups via social network
OLYMPIA, Wash. — Facebook users in Washington state will have something else to brag about to their online friends: that they registered to vote on Facebook.
The secretary of state's office said Tuesday it will have an application on its Facebook page that allows residents to register to vote and then "like" the application and recommend it to their friends. It's expected to launch as early as next week.
"In this age of social media and more people going online for services, this is a natural way to introduce people to online registration and leverage the power of friends on Facebook to get more people registered," said Shane Hamlin, co-director of elections.
Washington state has had online registration since 2008, and since then, there have been 475,000 registrations or changes of address processed through the system. Washington is one of more than a dozen states that offer online registration.
Hamlin said Washington state is the first to offer voter registration via Facebook.
"We are excited that citizens in Washington state will be able to register to vote and review useful voting information on Facebook," said Facebook spokesman Andrew Noyes.
The state, Facebook and Microsoft, which developed the application, have been collaborating on the project since last fall, Hamlin said.
Once it's live, Facebook users can click on the application within the secretary of state's Facebook page. They'll need to agree to let Facebook access their information, which will be used to prefill their name and date of birth in the voter registration form. Users will still need to provide a driver's license or state ID card number to continue.
Hamlin said that Facebook doesn't have access to the state's database; its page just overlays the application. Voters will also be able to access the state's "My Vote" site with specific information on candidates and ballot measures.
Hamlin said that beyond giving Facebook permission to use names and dates of birth, voters don't need to worry about their personal information being collected by Facebook.
"You are giving your information to us, not Facebook," he said.
07-17-12, 10:06 PM #2
It makes a certain amount of sense
You can tell where we're at up here in the Evergreen State on those voter ID laws Republicans are passing elsewhere. I sort of groan and roll my eyes like, "Why does it have to be Facebook?" But other than that, as I live in a vote-by-mail county, I don't see the harm in it. I suppose it would be nice to have something to sign, like a paper registration, but we'll see how it goes.
And, yes, I expect minor disasters, but I think that bit about lightning striking twice means we're not due for another forty-two vote gubernatorial election for another decade or six, so we'll be able to afford a few learning opportunities as this process develops.
07-17-12, 11:08 PM #3
I see this as a start in testing how well it can work and I know that all systems of this kind once started always improve over time. Knowing your expertise on political subjects, I would be interested in hearing what you think after browsing this Facebook site.
07-17-12, 11:41 PM #4
Think you guys missed the bit about drivers license numbers being required. Don't know about the US but in Australia that's a pritty common form of ID for goverment forms (along with tax file number if it's the ATO your dealing with). From the sound of it it seems reasonable, would say its a secure external application like we already use to lodge tax returns electronically which is just linked to Facebook to fill out name ect and to be "liked" to encourage its use. Sounds very logical and reasonable to me.
As for the comment "why did it have to be facebook" I can relate Tiassa, I used to feel the same way right up until organisations like SA police, country fire service, SES etc started using Facebook as a serious method of communicating vital public Infomation to the public. A couple of times SAPOL have run classes for senior management and recruits where they have asked for a public response to show how rapidly Infomation circulates through social media and they have hit 100,000 likes in less than an hour. It's also used to give direct feedback to senior management for CFS about there media applications (like there iPhone and android applications as well as there other distribution points). It has been responsible for some quite powerful "grass roots" political campaigns as well such as the anti Gloria jeans campaign which had the Australian Christian Loby scrambling and crying foul (always a good thing)
It's no longer just kids mucking around, it's now a serious communications forum which is much more responsive than the old school media and much easier to distribute than direct methods like phoning or emailing everyone
07-18-12, 09:06 AM #5
As for the comment "why did it have to be Facebook" I can relate Tiassa, I used to feel the same way right up until organizations like SA police, country fire service, SES etc started using Facebook as a serious method of communicating vital public Information to the public. A couple of times SAPOL have run classes for senior management and recruits where they have asked for a public response to show how rapidly Information circulates through social media and they have hit 100,000 likes in less than an hour. It's also used to give direct feedback to senior management for CFS about there media applications (like there iPhone and android applications as well as there other distribution points). It has been responsible for some quite powerful "grass roots" political campaigns as well such as the anti Gloria jeans campaign which had the Australian Christian Lobby scrambling and crying foul (always a good thing)
It's no longer just kids mucking around, it's now a serious communications forum which is much more responsive than the old school media and much easier to distribute than direct methods like phoning or emailing everyone.
07-18-12, 09:31 AM #6
Out of intrest how much "security" do you really need for voting? We don't have any requirements FTP produce ID at the polling booth, all you need to do is state your name and address to get it crossed off the roll. Until the libs changed the rules you also didn't need ID to enroll, all you needed was your name, address and the signature of someone else on the electrol roll and all investigations (carried out routinely after every election) have found no evidence of any real voter fraud, and the AEC isn't some little bumpkin organisation, the AEC is called on quite often by the UN to run and oversee elections in troubled areas, they are one of the most proffessional in the world (I belive though I could be wrong that it was the AEC running the first iraq elections). Also the parties oversea elections and none of them have alleged fraud either. So how much security is really needed?
07-18-12, 12:27 PM #7
07-18-12, 07:34 PM #8
See I disagree there, how many votes would need to be fraudulent in order to effect a presidential election? The number would have to be massive across the country where as if your looking at our elections the closest margin I have seen for an electrote is less than 100 votes and yet the parties, independents, media, international observers and the AEC investiagors are all happy that there isn't enough fraud to change an election.
This is on how to fix the numbers of people appearing to vote who have been dropped from the roll but has a section on the levels of voter fraud in Australia and the US
07-18-12, 10:04 PM #9
I tried—and failed—to find a witty titleOriginally Posted by KilljoyKlown
It would be very easy to screw up someone's ability to vote by filling out a false registration for them and mailing it in, so that the ballot goes to a different address.
To the other, that rarely—if ever—happens. It would be hard to imagine someone who would be willing to face such heat for so sophomoric a prank.
My primary objection to Facebook is that it's Facebook.
The upshot is that Facebook can become something more than what it is. I doubt I'll whine about it a whole lot, unless the whole thing becomes a clusterdiddle of cyclopean magnitude. But we haven't had noticeable problems with our current registration system, so I don't expect the Facebook version will go over that badly.
07-18-12, 10:20 PM #10
Well here in King County I seen people passing out the stupid fill-out notices for voter registration approval. Apparently each signature for those is worth money, thus they stand right outside QFC/Safeway hunting people like hawks. Anyways, the whole ordeal with the Facebook integration with voting will undoubtedly expose personal information to the corporate headquarters...as we all know facebook has been hacked prior many times.
07-18-12, 10:33 PM #11
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