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Re: Election Data

On Wed, 2008-07-23 at 10:53 -0400, Bill Nottingham wrote:
> Paul W. Frields (stickster gmail com) said: 
> > > Debian also makes their election data public, though they use a worse
> > > and much more complex Condorcet method, called "Shulze".
> > > http://www.debian.org/vote/2003/leader2003_tally.txt
> > 
> > I don't see a huge problem with this as long as the ballots are
> > anonymized.  Vote data is often analyzed for trends and other purposes,
> > and with Fedora being an open, transparent project overall, I think this
> > request doesn't go counter to our goals.  But I think the Board should
> > probably make this decision.
> Considering that we didn't actually state before the election that
> we would collect, anonymize, and mine the data, I don't think it's
> a good idea to do that now.

I'm not sure we stated beforehand that we'd publish the totals as we do
at https://admin.fedoraproject.org/voting/results/fescof10 either --
does that make it bad?

I think we, as a society, spend far too much time pandering to the
tinfoil hat brigade who like to whine about their 'privacy' without
actually being able to present any realistic situation in which the
release of certain data actually causes them even a _theoretical_

I'd be very disappointed if we refused to release _anonymised_ vote data
purely on the basis that we think there might be some nutter out there
who wouldn't come out from under his table for a few days if we did so.

I'd prefer to make a concrete proposal about _how_ the data are
anonymised and precisely what would be released, and then see if anyone
can actually come up with a _real_ reason not to do that.


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