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 "Never underestimate the power of a small group of people to change the world.
In fact it is the only way it ever has." Margaret Mead
Universal Suffrage via iVote  The wave to come!
Social Change: Why just vote? When you can iVote!

Section One: What it is

Section Two: Political Benefits

Section Three: Overview

Section Four: Clarifications

Section Five: Technical Notes

 Section One: What it is.

.... The essential is this: any group of people can organize to ivote. Some ideas I have discussed are a Global Women's Poll, a poll for all the First Nations Peoples, of all non-profit and charitable agencies or organizations, how about one for people of color, or each religion? For my part, what I am working on, via The Global Open Mic, is a global polling of poets. This idea has its origin in the dysfunctional condition of most nations, which have governments that are, at best, supported by minorities or powerful organizations, or individuals who control the media, the major institutions, and, in various ways, act to oppress the population they are supposed to be serving. As you will see iVote is a way around all such circumstances.

.... iVoting is a system of conducting polls done of, by, and for the people at all levels of social organization, the precinct for example, as well towns, cities, states, provinces, nations, even globally, thus giving the people a voice. It is different from all current polling systems in that the questions would be sourced from the people. The system would provide direct results quickly and as needed: hourly, daily, weekly or monthly depending on the import of an issue or concern. Since people could respond over time and alter their response in accord with developments, it would provide dynamic results accounting for updates, due to new information or research regarding the status of a public official, person of notoriety, an issue, or as situational developments demand. This would be the heart of a social revolution - it would promote social change on a global scale.

..... The theory is if we, the people, owned our own perspective, had access to our own truth, and could promulgate our opinions or perceptions; and we, the people, knew, at any given moment, what our thoughts or opinions were upon a given issue, it would have game-changing effects on the political realities in ways which are just not currently possible. Social change could proceed apace with such a system in place - no matter what governments or the usual mass media outlets might say.


..... iVoting, or polling, could occur at locations agreed upon by groups such as families, neighbors, precincts, and so forth, although it wouldn't necessarily require meetings all the time, nor always in the same place once trust is established between individuals and with the system. The places could be homes, business, schools, parks, a place of worship, or cafe, meeting places could change easily enough because the system will have a built in flash-mob capacity for the convenience of those taking part in the polls. Once someone is an established iVoter, he or she could respond to a poll via a cell phone, laptop, desktop, by phone, mail, or via another iVoter.

..... Initially a person would join the system by through people they know well, friends, family members, coworkers, and so on, who are in the system. This "hands on" or "hand shake" is the key for establishing system security. Those attending iVote meetings would verify each other's identity in multiple ways all while having complete privacy as to how each responds to a poll.

..... The system would have near complete transparency, one would have access to one's own record of polling, the voting record one's precinct, neighborhood, town, city, state and so on. It would always be possible to check and cross check iVoting records at any time. People could also share their records, should they wish to do so individually, as a group, and so on, as a means of verifying results.

..... One aspect of the polling questions posed is that, to the extent possible they'll be framed in positive terms that is to say, in terms of support for, a person, issue, proposal, law or other action. This may not be always be possible, and, surely, a yes/no option will be more efficient.

Section Two: Political Benefits

.....Once established as a viable entity, the polling would become a ubiquitous and integral part of the social fabric at all levels and a raft of profound changes will then be possible.

..... iVoting will be a polling of, by, and for the people. We, the people, will ask the poll questions, find our own answers, and become self-informed on any issue of the day. In this way we, the people, will know what we, the people, believe, think, want, like, or dislike. Because the questions are sourced from the people, we will finally have a work around all governmental and corporate media. No longer will we be prey to manufactured perceptions. Having our own access to our own truth and being able to promulgate our own opinions would affect the political realities in ways that are currently impossible.

..... The iVote system will provide people with a "zero degrees of separation" network. The people will be able to coordinate action plans, organize, lend support to those struggling for justice, and undertake direct actions as they see fit including but not limited to boycotts, strikes, divestments, positive investing and more.

..... On a personal level, it would enhance a given person's self-perception as it would encourage social networking, the discussion of issues, raise political consciousness, and allow individuals to quickly and easily take action to address issues of concern to them or society.

..... Social activism would be easier to organize and the people could hold corporations and influential individuals accountable by tracking their own poll numbers, and using the system to organize.

..... Grassroots organizations would interconnect nationally and internationally in order to promote a new economy where the corporate behavior is monitored and guided into doing better and better, this, of course, would certainly affect politicians.

Section Three: Overview

Part A:

..... Practically speaking, the development of the iVote system could be similar to what organizations such as Yahoo, Facebook, Twitter, EBay, or Craig's List do an much more. However, if those organizations, along with others, an alliance of technical experts, both governmental or not, as well as activist organizations and other stakeholders, could work together to create an iVote system. What will differentiate iVote from those systems is that it will foster neighborly, face-to-face, social networking for persons who, though proximate to one another, in the "walking distance" or "very short drive" range, would, ordinarily, ever meet, much less get know one anther or lend each other assistance. Although there will be the usual kinds of security involved with transactions, the interpersonal connection, the handshake, will make a comeback as people reconnect with each other, literally.

..... Investor interest would be based upon iVote's comprehensive potential for more traffic than the older systems mentioned above as iVote would do everything they do yet add in the vital thing: the hardware and software will complimented, and activated by, "people ware" those essential aspects of the system involving interpersonal meetings, handshakes and gatherings.

..... Users would benefit as members lowered each other's cost of living through trading, bartering or the exchange of goods and services. There could be a "Barter-buddy" portion of the system, which would help neighbors exchange goods and or services and "Neighbor-net" a function helping people to coordinate activism on the precinct, neighborhood, zip code or higher levels.

Part B:

..... The system would allow the exchange of goods, services, currency and more to be done via cell phones, blackberries, web sites, other social media and so forth. This is possible now that banking and a wide variety of financial arrangements can be done via cell phones or other capable devices.

Part C:

..... Although conducting of polls is the ultimate purpose of the whole project, the social networking and its benefits would come first in order to establish the platform, that would support polling and have it become a ubiquitous, functioning part of the social fabric on all levels.

..... The source of the polling would be questions asked by people themselves in a system that would begin with ideas originating in the grass roots, sourced from individuals at precinct or neighborhood levels. The questions would then percolate their way up to the city, county, state, national and international level as acceptance, controversy or need allows. At first, the polls may well be local but as the system gains in popularity, by proving itself practicable, it would, by encouraging grass roots, crowd sourced political awareness, effect polities around the world.

..... Membership would be based on participation and dependent, at some level, on face-to-face recognition by other members. For polling a "chipped" token or specially encoded thumb drive, could be used at a location where witnesses would insure each person gets one chance to enter poll data. We do this sort of thing already with voting machines and credit cards.

I know what you might be asking: But couldn't this be done much more simply?

..... Yes, the large scale website is not absolutely necessary. If all that is really needed is the means for taking polls, a far simpler website structure would be possible. This would be less expensive, far easier to set up, and it could be up and running in a much shorter time period. What would make that possible is people organizing to support the concept and then the creation of the web access for iVoting.

For examples:

- Universal Suffrage can be used by smaller groups to their advantage. iVote could help any ethnic group understand itself beyond what governments or corporate media state, women could do this, globally as could any of the First Nation peoples. In sum it can become a way for groups to organize, better cooperate, and find ways to meet their needs as opposed to the usual kind of business.

- iVote could be constructed, for such groups, via the current internet capacities, this societal version would support and organize boycotts of businesses, media, or websites that are known to be poor employers, make dangerous products, are offensive, say offensive things or who support politicians, programs or policies that are dangerous, offensive, or curtail the inalienable rights to life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness or equality under the law.

- The Poet's Poll is an idea to use iVote for a subset of society, as you can see I mean poets to organize globally in order to give voice to their concerns as well as of those of the people they know. Essentially the poets take a poll and allow anyone else to join in so long as they know the person and trust them. When a poll question is then posed they pass the word onto their "constituents" so that they can participate as well. At worst the idea is harmless, at best we, the poets, will have a voice in the world's affairs. Perhaps we could be a nation unto ourselves and so have a presence and a voice at the UN. Now wouldn't that be something?

Section Four: Clarifications


How would a person join in?

..... People would join iVote via friends, family, coworkers, and acquaintances, there could be a set number of persons required to "invite" a given individual. This would make the system interpersonal, and, essentially, based on face to face meetings, handshakes both real and virtual, in the form of exchanged data between friends. This would make the system interpersonal and provide a basis for security.

How would someone get a polling question placed before the community?

..... The queries by people would be sourced at the precinct or neighborhood level. Poll questions, which garner support, meaning a requisite percentage of total responses, whether negative or positive, are then sent on to higher levels, meaning larger regions or groupings of people. There would have to be an aggregating function so that similar questions are grouped or combined. Of course persons in government or media could also propose a polling question but it would have to proceed in a like manner. A polling question will rise through the levels in accord with the interest the people have in responding, again, whether negative or positive.

..... This would, by encouraging grass roots, crowd sourced political awareness, affect polities around the world.

Will this supplant the usual kind of voting?

..... iVote, it is really not meant to supplant voting, but rather it will be an important supplement to it. A parallel system, if you will. iVote's purpose is to change the way the people, on all levels, and as often as needed, make their opinions known. In an iVote world the role of the media and government would be different than it is today.

..... What this means is that iVoting would evolve to create a three-part cycle to public discussion on any issue. First, an issue would rise to importance via iVote polling, second, public figures would rise to the occasion and, through debates and discussions, analyze the issue from various points of view&emdash;so as to inform the people, third, the role of the media would be to cover these events and add the contributions of those who have expertise to share. The media would function as one means to disseminate those discussions, debates, research, and information so that the public at large could then amend their response to the polling question over time, via iVote. Thus would we all be part of a system that creates a true vox populi. Therefore, while it is not really voting, per se, despite its name, I chose it because the moniker has a marketable "cool factor."

How will polling be done?

..... The essential aspect of this system, which sets it apart from all the others, is that to join and or participate you will be need to meet your neighbors and shake hands, or the cultural equivalent.

..... Activities, meetings, and poll taking could take place at all manner of centers as long as they are very local, the corner store, neighborhood school, firehouse, a neighbor's home or local business, religious place or community hall. All of these places could be possible locations to meet your neighbor, engage in business to verify the taking of any poll, they can be changed by mutual agreement.

..... The polling would be via chipped "tokens" or encrypted thumb drives, used in concert with a chain of trust, friendship, neighbors and so on, so that polling could be done easily, conveniently. One would "load up one's token" or thumb drive with iVote data, take it to the local meeting so that witnesses could verify you used you responded to a poll by exchanging data with the system. Any number of issues could be covered at one time.

..... A model for consideration might be Estonia's electric voting system, perhaps with a national ID card with encryption key and a card reader in computer so you can verify your polling and audit, your groups or localities could do so as well.

What would be a "good result?

..... I would say that any polling question meeting a threshold, say 75% of the public approval or disapproval could well require the government's consideration, morally - certainly, legally - eventually but all those who run the political systems would subject to an ongoing evaluation by the people without a doubt.

However, if it is only a poll, how will that really change anything?

..... iVote is a system of polling and yes, it is only a poll, but it allows something that, at this point in human history, has not ever existed before and is only now, in this day and age, possible, which is to say the ability of the people to formulate their own questions and do their own polling of, by, and for themselves. This will allow them to know for certain what they think, want, like, dislike, approve or not approve of - without any intermediary. It allows intimate and national polling done by and for the people and is a run around the government, the 1%, the mass media and so on and so forth.

..... The heart of iVote is a system which allows "anytime polling" on issues great and small. The people will no longer be told what they think, want, believe and so on. It would be a game changer.

What about people who do not have connections or have other problems?

..... iVote could include persons voting via a trusted friend, phoning in, even using a written note or simple, printed form, which could be marked using a pencil or pen. A computer would not be needed in all places at all times because trust, handshakes, friendships and more could allow anyone to participate via community connections.

What about repressive governments or similar situations?

..... As long as voting is done in centralized, controlled, locations, the authorities can monitor everything, control what is on a ballot, make determinations as to what any result is, control who and who cannot vote, prevent groups from gathering, or local functionaries from enacting legislation counter to "national interests."

..... In addition, a repressive government could resist establishing iVote but the world would still be able to weigh in on that government's actions and or inaction.

..... iVoting can take place at anytime and in any place, there will be no polling places centrally controlled by governing agencies. People could gather at homes, local buildings, backyards, Café's at parks, on street corners, you name it. The proverbial one percent will not be able to have their minions everywhere, nor shut down all web activity, phoning, friends meeting up, folks talking in the parks or as they stroll along. It will be very difficult to stop the dissemination of polling results. The genie is out of the bottle. Social evolution will proceed.

..... In addition, it may well be that, eventually, voting could be done in a way very similar to this.
What about members doing business with each other?

..... There would be the notion that any agreement could be witnessed, and verified by members agreeing to act as witnesses and or mediators when such is needed. There are many existent community arbitration organizations, certainly a protocol would be established for handling complaints.

A second set of questions:

1) In the age and speed of the internet where ideas and opinions flow memetically with little to no resistance nor veracity check nor peer review, how does one allow for the instant polling of a populace that is only as well informed as it is weakest most prolific influencer?

.... We face that problem right now. How do we know current polling, or for that matter voting, is accurate when corporations are the source of the questions, the counting of responses and the reporting out of results?  Simple answer is we don't. For example exit polling from Texas shows a wide discrepancy between Bidden and Bernie, as did three or four other states. The discrepancy was large enough to have those states flip from Bidden to Bernie. The error was well over 4%, a rate which has caused the our government to call out elections in other nations as being invalid.

..... Part of the idea assumes or would result in the role of politicians and the media changing. While the people will ask their own questions, find their own results from any given poll, the media would have, as its role, informing the public of facts and sources of information or data, while politicians and others, influencers if you will, have the role of presenting the necessary argumentation, debate and policy, or regulatory, methods for the people to consider in order to resolve the issue at hand. The issue of verity, and thinking things through will, in part, be handled by the people who will, as part of this process, discuss matters with family, friends, neighbors, and co-workers. It will be a grass roots phenomenon. Also, and this may not have been clear, that the polling will be ongoing, not just for elections, or at certain times. So a given issue, candidate, regulation, mover and shaker, or proposed law may well have a varied level of support over time and this would become part of the system of approval for any such, eventually I mean.

2)  Where lies the fate of a nation or it people when the data is garbage coming in and the opinions are the like going out?

..... Again, this is a current problem. We can only hope that the community discussions among individuals and those they know will prompt, cause and or result in much more due deliberation on everyone's part. The media has to be trusted, as it is not now. Experts need to be trusted, heard, and understood, as they are not now, for the most part.

..... What I think would happen is that, as with any new system, there will be a shakedown period in which bad ideas will be trotted out and the ignorant or easily manipulated will support them. Then, once the idea is tried out and there is the consequent failure, well, the people will have a means to adjust, for examples, the polling support for a candidate will fall or the support for a given measure, program or project will tank. Also, and this is important, with this system, folks will be talking to folks, they will be able to organize in ways we cannot imagine. Strikes, protests, boycotts, and more will become far more easily implemented and carried out.

3) What is a handshake in a world where pandemics are a perennial holiday gift that keep on giving?

..... It wouldn't have to be physical handshake, although that would be the ideal. Two people meeting up, or a gathering at a local neighbor's home, corner store, church school or as one goes for walks would be sufficient for data to be exchanged. Two people, ten people, two people exchanging data for those that trust them, there would be thousands of ways that the data could be aggregated and it would encourage folks to get out and meet their friends, neighbors, and so on...

4) How might personal technological devices be introduced into the proposal to assure authenticity and security and data sharing?

..... This is where computer experts would have to answer. But, in sum, any two persons who trust each other create a virtual box. Either person can open their side of it, with an ever changing, personal and or temporary code. Neither can open the other's side of the box. The data put in the box can only come from one or the other. Both can change their security codes on the fly. Thus the personal trust is modeled by the virtual box. In this safe space any kind of data can be exchanged. Next point, people exchange goods and services already and it seems to be, for the vast most part secure, secure enough for money that is. The essential component of this system is interpersonal, real, live contact with someone you trust. However it does not have to be computers alone. People without computers could access the system through trusted friends, there could be phone in options, ballots, petitions, in short any of the means we currently use for recording public response could be integrated.

5)  What fail-safes could you perceive building into your system to protect against a corruptive temporal public sentiment?

.... With this we go back to look at the system as it is. We elected Trump. We currently have an oligarchy, corrupted to the point of incredulousness. Next we have number 4, above. But there is no complete fail-safe against corrosive, corrupted temporal public sentiment, what this system offers is a means to counter the overweening influence of the hyper wealthy. There will be errors, problems and so on, take a look at question number 2.

..... Then there are the systemic notions. The education system would be brought into the process. Our students would know about polling, the math related to it, how the system works and, as students would have a similar system at the schools to resolve issues, solve problems and so begin to create a new generation of citizens for whom iVoting is a way of life, debate and discussion would be part of the curriculum from the get go, as would logic, reason, and even, gasp, philosophy.

Section Five, technological Notes

How would it be set up?

..... There would be no new technology needed. Everything necessary for this system to be put in place or ready to be taken "off the shelf."

..... After talking with a computer programmer as to what would be needed to set something like this up, I was told that some dozen or so programmers given room and board for 8 months or so could create the code for the system I have attempted to describe. It would be scaled up using cloud computing and so reduce the costs of expansion.

..... The participation, at the polling place level, will be dependent on face-to-face recognition by other participants as well as real and virtual handshakes. One could use a token or software program in a flash drive to publicly respond to a poll. Those present, the witnesses would insure that each person gets one vote. We do this sort of thing already with voting machines and credit cards.

..... It does require planning but I've been assured the technical aspect requires nothing that does not already exist in terms of software or hardware and that security would be sourced at the individual user level.

But what do others think?
The initial research has not found a comparable system. What I will do is find systems that may be close. It may come to that. We shall see

This talks about the
simple fixes that could make voting in the US better, but it is still the ordinary and the "same old."

From Stanford we have an outline of the different ways people vote,
the advantages or disadvantages of the differing methods

The New Republic uncovers problems exposed by the successful Obama campaign of 2012.

In Estonia a large portion of their voting is done online, and this is close to what I am thinking about but it is still, not instant, not sourced from the people and it is a scheduled event but they do call it i-voting, with is eerily similar to what I call iVoting.

The Washington Post asks if Estonia can do it, why can't we?

However good the system might be iVoting as it is in Estonia may not be the answer, there are
hacking issues according to the Telegraph

There are differing views regarding internet voting!

..... I am intent upon problem solving and, in association with Creative Ideas Consulting of San Francisco, I am embarking on another means of affecting the warp and woof of our social fabric so as to promote a healthy change in the evolution of the human civilization or community on Earth.

..... Much more is coming but this note provides notice that help is on the way, in the meantime, to make inquiries, see the following link: Email Dan!