Education Policy | Post Primary | Preschool | Primary | Tertiary | Search

 


Does too much information/communication endanger democracy?

Is too much information and communication endangering democracy?

Elections are designed to lead to stable and effective government if voters express their true opinions and vote sincerely. However, when they get a clear idea of how other voters might vote, voters may be tempted to maximise the chances of the desired outcome by voting strategically.

Elections are designed to lead to stable and effective government if voters express their true opinions and vote sincerely. However, when they get a clear idea of how other voters might vote, voters may be tempted to maximise the chances of the desired outcome by voting strategically.

In the information-rich society of today, through media polls and by exchanging opinions on social media sites such as twitter, voters can get a clearer idea than ever before of which way the vote might go and what coalition of strategic voters should be formed to achieve a result which is more desirable for them.

There is not much that a single person can do. However if a voter is well-connected in the online world and has many followers - up to 50 million for example - he or she may be tempted to persuade followers to vote in a certain way.

Such a creation of powerful manipulating coalitions may have a serious destabilising effect on democracy in the future.

Strategic voting and the potential power of social media in regard to elections is the topic of University of Auckland mathematics professor Arkadii Slinko’s Inaugural Lecture on May 29.

“Social networks are a concern because voter influence offline is meticulously regulated,” Professor Slinko says. “For example, there are rules around advertising and publication of polls close to polling day but nothing is regulated online".

“That means that as a voter, I have the same power that you do. But in an online world, some people have become super-powerful in social networks so that they have the potential to be more powerful than you or me and this is not regulated.”

Professor Slinko will discuss examples where political polls may have influenced the outcome of an election, including the case of an American body builder elected Governor of Minnesota in 1999.

Professor Slinko also discusses mathematical problems in trying to understand how strategic voting undermines the rules of an electoral system.

“The most difficult thing to know is how voters react to information. We don’t know how many strategic voters there are for example. But we are trying to understand how coalitions of voters form and the increased influence some individual voters may have.”

Lecture details: 6 - 7pm, PLT1 Lecture Theatre, Building 303, 38 Princes St

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

Books: Witi Ihimaera To Address ‘State Of NZ Literature’at Festival

6 May 2015 MEDIA RELEASE Witi Ihimaera to Address ‘State of NZ Literature’ at Dunedin Writers and Readers Festival The New Zealand Book Council has chosen the 2015 Dunedin Writers and Readers Festival as the stage for its annual address, which ... More>>

Culture: Historic Māori Portraits Travel To The Czech Republic

Image credit: Gottfried Lindauer, Wahanui Reihana Te Huatare, oil on canvas, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of Mr H E Partridge, 1915 More>>

Art: Something Felt, Something Shared - Enjoy

Gabrielle Amodeo, Ruby Joy Eade, Clare McLean, Kalya Ward Curated by Emma Ng May 7 – 30, 2015 Opening: Wednesday May 6, 5.30pm Strange frequencies are channelled through personal narratives and poetic placeholders in Something felt, something ... More>>

Culture: Pukeahu Park ANZAC Day Commemoration 2015

Pukeahu Park ANZAC Day Commemoration 2015 Images from New Zealand Defence Force Click for big version A bugler plays The Last Post Click for big version A View from the top of the Carillion Click for big version Faces old and young Click for big ... More>>

Television: MediaWorks Announces Dancing With The Stars Hosts

MediaWorks and BBC Worldwide ANZ are delighted to announce host Dominic Bowden alongside co-host Sharyn Casey for the hit series Dancing with the Stars. More>>

Art: World Premiere Of In Pursuit Of Venus [infected]

World Premiere of in Pursuit of Venus [infected] opens this Saturday at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki More>>

Fashion: The 11th ID International Emerging Designer Winner Announced

Emerging Kiwi fashion designer Steve Hall has taken out the top prize at the 11th annual iD International Emerging Designer Awards held at the Town Hall in Dunedin, New Zealand. More>>


Review: Singin’ In The Rain

Singin’ in the Rain , the wet and wonderful musical production all the way from London’s West End, officially opened at St. James Theatre in Wellington. More>>

Francis Cook: Gallipoli: The Scale Of Our War – First Look

Te Papa today allowed media access to their new exhibition Gallipoli: The Scale of Our War . The exhibition was curated with help from Weta Workshop to deliver an immersive, realistic and even disorienting experience. More>>

ALSO:

Bats Theatre: Letters From The Front Brings ANZAC Letters Alive

Inspired by centenary commemorations, improv troupe Best on Tap is producing a show based on real-life letters sent to and from New Zealand soldiers in the First World War. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Education
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news