Not too many years ago the word’involve’ became the star word, so, at least in management terms, it was about involving people in the company’s objectives. A little later, and until today, «participate» is the little word that has become the winner of the first place, year after year. I suppose that the innate desire to belong makes people, consciously or unconsciously, want to participate in some kind of collective, either as part of an artist’s fan club or as members of a political grouping. The point is to make it easier for people to participate.
An example of how people can actively participate in an event is reality shows; yes, those that deal with vocalists, gymnasts and even amateur dancers. Typically, a jury of people who do understand the subject will filter through the first contestants, until there comes a time when, reduced to a dozen or so – let’s say – the participants begin to depend, to some extent, on the support of the public. Now, how does this public show their sympathy, apathy or antipathy towards this or that contestant? Right, through your vote. And how do you vote? Well, on the phone.
Well, just as you can vote for an artist via text message, why can’t you do the same to choose a country’s president? The system is much safer than any other system that includes «urn», «darkroom», and/or the traditional «canvassing table». There would certainly be an initial work of registration and purging, in the sense of one mobile number, one vote’, which would avoid duplication, but the thing would be more of a processing of existing information’ for telephone companies. Now, let’s examine some consequences of voting via text message.
First of all, the results would be visible on the day of the vote; there would be no such thing as a «ballot counting» circus (no one would have to be paid to count and recount the votes). No one would have to move from such a place to such a place to vote (which would save each voter these travel expenses). The cost of each message is, if not free, extremely cheap or at least accessible. Regarding the identity of the voters, secrecy can also be maintained through a simple algorithm. So I don’t see the downside.
However, oh economists, oh politicians, oh Duality, which for some represents an expense, for others represents an income. That is to say, part of my money as a taxpayer becomes income for the owner of the printing shop who prints the ballots, for the one who sells the refreshments consumed by the judges, for the one who builds the ballot boxes, for the one who sells the indelible ink, for the driver who moves some voters, and so on. So, I laugh and pity the «adult» people who think that GOING to vote is a «thinking» people.
Yes, there is a place where everything is online: Estonia, where you can even get a virtual citizenship. Search and you will find.