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[liberationtech] Web Access to Voting Records - talk tomorrow

Todd Davies davies at
Wed Oct 29 13:04:49 PDT 2008

I am giving this talk tomorrow which may be of interest to some on this 

                           ***SYMBOLIC SYSTEMS FORUM***

               "Web Access to Voting Records: Motivations and Issues"

                                   Todd Davies
                            Symbolic Systems Program

                             Thursday, Oct. 30, 2008
                                  4:15-5:30 pm
                      Building 380, Room 380C (Math Corner)
                 (Parking in nearby lots at no charge after 4 pm)

ABSTRACT: I will describe the thinking behind Who Voted? (, a new 
website where voter histories that are legally available to the public can be 
uploaded and viewed by anyone with an Internet connection. The Who Voted site 
complements advocacy aimed at ensuring auditable paper ballots, addressing the 
aspect of secret ballot election integrity that relies on verification of the 
list of those who voted. It also aims to promote voting, by making the list of 
those who voted (but not who they voted for) easier to see. The road to 
producing this site was long, and provoked criticism from some privacy 
advocates, which in turn affected the design of the site and what information 
it makes available. I will review the reasoning behind the site, and describe 
the issues it raises as well as how it addresses them. One issue is that voter 
histories for some but not all states can be posted legally on the Internet, 
and even those states where the information is public generally do not post it 
on the Web. I will discuss this why this is so, and describe the case for Web 
access to voting records. (Joint work with Jeffrey Gerard, Reid Chandler, and 
Gordon Lyon)


Thursday, Nov. 6 SSP Forum: Speaker and topic TBA, 4:15-5:30 pm, 380-380C

Thursday, Nov. 13 SSP Forum: Ge Wang, Music Department, "At the Intersection of 
Music and Computer Science: ChucK, Live Coding, and Laptop Orchestras", 
4:15-5:30 pm, 380-380C (with dinner afterward for students and faculty)

Thursday, Nov. 20 SSP Forum: Kenneth Arrow, Economics Department, Title TBA, 
4:15-5:30 pm, 380-380C

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