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Re: Election Data



Let me also say this.

We can argue till the cows come home, but I think it is probably already clear which people have the authority to make this decision, and it is probably already clear to them what the best decision is.  So continuing to debate it is academic.  I'm simply trying to emphasize that this data holds great value to humanity, and so releasing it in the future -- after dutifully informing voters about it beforehand -- seems to me to be a very good thing.

At http://rangevoting.org/LivesSaved.html, Warren Smith begins:
==
During 2000-2050, the world will face several crises. These include: the end of cheap oil, various "fossil water" resources running out, global fisheries species collapse, USA federal bankruptcy, overpopulation, nuclear and bioweapons proliferation, and climate change. These could easily bring about the "end of modern civilization." Far as I can see, world population and consumption levels are already well beyond what can be supported with renewable resources, therefore a population decline is inevitable.

In view of that, the world needs to make good decisions. But the "decision making algorithm for the world" is (to a close approximation, with the USA the only "superpower") the same as "the USA's horrible voting system."

That isn't good enough. Range voting is a far better decision-making algorithm.
==

That is the context in which I view this entire issue.  Doubling the effect of democracy over non-democracy is an opportunity which far exceeds the value of competing reforms.  But the vast majority of humans do not know how big of a problem this is, and so there are enormous obstacles to the implementation of score-based voting.  In order to ultimately have success at implementing score voting in political elections, we need to have as much information as possible about its behavior in real "contentious" elections.  Fedora elections may not inspire the same kind of passionate voting as the race between Clinton and Obama did, but they are significant, and attended by some of the smartest people in society.  The scarcity of data from scoring elections is particularly significant considering that the Center for Range Voting only began in 2005 - and before that point, at which Smith's Bayesian regret data became actively publicized, the conventional wisdom was that scoring would not work as a voting method.  So this makes the Fedora data even more valuable.

Bottom line is this.  I do not want to disrespect the privacy of your voters.  But I do want to use this limited lifespan to do everything possible to save my species from destroying itself in the not-too-distant future.  Considering what's at stake, I believe it is not too unreasonable for the Fedora community to change policy to make future election data available to the public - or at least to interested activists who want to research it.  I just don't think there's any real harm in it, as long as you've respected the voters by letting them know.

Regards,
Clay "Savin' the Planet" Shentrup

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