Florida Ballots Were Poorly Designed?

from the Untie-against-Bore-and-Gush! dept

Everyone should be sick of voting news by now. But how would you like to vote on the design of a West Palm Beach ballot? It seems some people in that county were confused by the ballot and voted for Buchanan instead of Gore. So how do red-blooded Americans deal with this sort of dyslexia? Well, sue the state of Florida for another election, of course!

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Comments on “Florida Ballots Were Poorly Designed?”

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Anonymous Coward says:


This is the most ridiculous situation I’ve ever seen in my life. Maybe people shouldn’t be allowed to vote, if they’re too stupid to pay attention to the big arrows on the ballot.

Yeah, so they’re interleaved… big deal. If you were paying attention to what you were doing you would have noticed it at the right time. Now, our country gets to be dragged through the mud, perhaps even for a couple more months, because some little pissants who couldn’t figure out a ballot have now decided to sue.

To tell you the truth, I don’t care too much who wins. I just don’t want to have to listen to this crap for the same amount of time that I had to hear about Elian.

MrHappy says:

Bad UI

In all fairness that ballot is one of the worst examples of bad user interface I’ve seen in a long time. What imbecile decided that the ballot should be interleaved?
I can imagine the thought process now: “First we have them read left to right, then right to left, then left to right, then right to left… it’s, like, real efficient man” and then have ’em hit the little black dot in the middle of the page.
Suggestions for next time:
1. interleaving is stupid but if you must:
2. don’t use an arrow, extend a thick black line from the text arrow into contact with the circle
3. offset the circle towards the side it corresponds to
4. don’t hire your dumb cousin Zeb to design the thing

Mike (profile) says:

Getting sick of this discussion

If you’ve been watching the news at all, this seems to be the only conversation that’s going on in the world. Every station seems to be spending so much time looking at the Florida ballot.

It’s also pretty clear that almost everyone’s opinion on the ballot has to do with which candidate they support. Most Bush supporters think it’s a stupid discussion and think whoever messed up was stupid. Meanwhile most Gore supporters think this is a huge deal, and feel that they’ve been tricked.

The UI designer of the ballot claims that she made the print larger so that the elderly in Palm Beach county could read it better, and the only way to fit it then was to place the dots in the middle. There is apparently also something in the Florida laws that say ballots have to be marked to the right of the name… which have caused some people to say that these ballots are illegal.

Also, the numbers do suggest that, whether people are stupid or not, the ballots did confuse a significant number of people. Stupidity or confusion is not a reason to not let people vote… So, it seems clear that whether or not you think this is a valid argument, there definitely were problems with the design of the ballot. Now, if anything can/should be done about it… that’s going to be a painful discussion for some people…

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