New Study Shows Massive Error Rates In E-Voting Machines

from the that-can-swing-an-election dept

Just as e-voting firm Sequoia is resisting having its machines reviewed independently, the Brookings Institute has put a bunch of e-voting machines to the test, and found error rates around 3% on some of the machines. These weren't errors due to software problems, but usability problems, where the design of the system resulted in people voting for a candidate they did not want. 3% is a huge number, and could easily change the results of an election. While the study found that people generally like e-voting technology, that still doesn't mean it's particularly effective. One other interesting part of the finding: when there was a voter-verified paper trail, it didn't cut down on errors. This suggests that many voters were either confused or didn't even bother to verify their vote. This should all be very worrisome. Even ignoring the technology problems that these machines have been shown to have, the fact that the design tends to create so many mistake votes should lead people to seriously question the use of e-voting machines.

Filed Under: e-voting, error rates
Companies: brookings, diebold, es&s, sequoia


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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Mar 2008 @ 1:26pm

    Re: A few different points.

    Whats worse is the 60% of people who do not vote complain the loudest when things don't go the way they want. To those people I say this, You have no right to complain about anything.

    The point that you're missing is that those in the %60 who supposed didn't vote really did vote. They voted with their feet for "None of the above". It's not the fault of the voter if there are no candidates worth voting for.

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