Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Future form of democracy



Today in school the question what effect it would have if there were no political parties was raised. While almost all opinions were that democracy would not be possible without, I think otherwise. The current democratic form in Germany is a representative democracy, meaning we elect parties and their representatives, which then decide upon matters (more or less according to what they promised before the elections). 

An alternative which would give citizens more possibilities to express their opinion would be direct democracy, defined by Wikipedia as "[...] a form of democracy and a theory of civics in which sovereignty is lodged in the assembly of all citizens who choose to participate".  The problem commonly mentioned first for a direct democracy is  how to manage the countless amounts of votes which would be necessary. Well, I think the technological developments of the last years or decades have made it at least possible for the more important decisions to be voted upon.

For example, there is a technology called "LiquidFeedback" (German Wikipedia link), which was developed on suggestion by members of the German pirate party (Link). LiquidFeedback is a free software that enables users to submit initiatives and vote upon them, and also to delegate their vote to others. The pirate party uses it in test mode to hold votes on topics on which it's position hasn't been decided yet.

Considering the current percentage of 72% households in Germany which have internet access (a number that grows by 2-3% per year), and if the voting technologies would be properly developed, I think it could be used now or in a few years as a first step in the direction of more civic participation, at least in some mixed form of direct and representative democracy, in which the citizens directly decide upon the most important and controversial topics.

What do you think about this? Do you think future developments could go in this direction or to something completely different?

102 comments:

  1. If you're talking about completely turning voting into a virtual thing, then I don't think it could be possible. It could easily be rigged or hijacked, there's nothing on the w3's that are safe. I'd love it to happen, it definitely would be a great thing and would increase the amount of voting going on... but it's just too unsafe in this day/age.

    Your blog is very nice! Keep it up :)

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  2. Im not sure what is worse the system now or giving control to the mindless masses of sheeple.

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  3. Just because it's the majority doesn't mean it's the right thing to do.

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  4. The virtual world is still too easily hacked. It's a great concept, but I don't think we are ready for it just yet.

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  5. is technology really the answer?
    what about a reconnect with nature?
    thats where are roots and realtions are right?

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  6. Liquid feedback sounds like a good idea to me, technology is the way forward!

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  7. Technology will play an evermore increasing part of democracy and I think thats a good thing as it gets people more involved with important issues.

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  8. I would like to think that things are going to change in this direction, but why on earth would the government put more power in our hands? We would have to force them to allow this or they will always bring up issues of security of fairness to those without the technology.

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  9. Honestly, I believe that even if parties were abolished, they'd still form again. People have similar ideas and they like to talk to others that think like them. I don't think anything is going to get rid of that.

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  10. i lost interest in politics a long time ago , too corrupt. following

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  11. Very interesting post, I love when things in school bring up such interesting thoughts and questions!

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  12. less government, more profits

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  13. For what it's worth, I think America is stuck being what it is. Everyone is too pigheaded to think out of the box and make our every day lives more efficient and what not. The way the govt works, political parties, all that, its as if people are afraid of drastic change and would rather stagnate... >:3

    Just my humble opinion.

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  14. The thing with democracy is; people vote what is best for them - lower taxes, better healthcare, better schooling, more policemen etc.

    The problem as we are finding out is that there is not enough cash to actually provide all of these services. Politics in the western world is currently a game of false promises and no party can please everybody.

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  15. Democracy. Bit of a joke at times.

    Hope you can Click" me back smtime :)

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  16. I feel that if virtual voting were to become a reality, trolls would rule the world.

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  17. lol if virtual voting happend, people would manipulate the system and people would get into office nondeservingly.... cause that doesnt happen nowadays...

    http://ddrmidgetid.blogspot.com/

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  18. Democracy sure suck some time.. haha
    Following.

    http://djcfontaine.blogspot.com/

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  19. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  20. People die for democracy, think we have it lucky

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  21. democracy....?
    democracy!
    maybe a joke at times but better than other political states. China- communism! id rather have democracy

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  22. sometimes you don't want things to move too swiftly b/c as BJ Franklin said:

    you CAN fool all of the ppl some of the time...

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  23. could go in the direction they are heading.. but things never go there way there planned..

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  24. As many others have said if voting goes virtual there will be to much temptation of hijacking it

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  25. Technology's always been an important part of how well democracy can function, and at the same time it can be its undoing.


    followed and supporting:

    http://pimpgangstermedley.blogspot.com/

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  26. no political parties or more political parties? its all the same thing! the world is based on a monetary system and now matter how we change our democracy the world will still pretty much run the same with some slight modifications

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  27. It's definitely a great idea. I'd love to see how it gets implemented more in the future.

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  28. While in theory a great idea, extremely hard to make it as fool proof as good old paper and counting.

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  29. First time I have heard about LiquidFeedback. Very interesting.

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  30. I'm into vid games too

    You should post a lot more political cartoons. I like theeemmmm

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  31. Only post some in english too

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  32. cant stand how politics work, good post though

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  33. To be honest, this sounds like a good idea. Only problem is, as mentioned before, to make this foolproof.

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  34. all i care we could have anarchy , if humans would have evolved enough

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  35. Very interesting article. Good job mate!

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  36. I was looking into LiquidFeedback the other day, it's interesting but hard to get your head around!

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  37. Internet still isn't secure enough for this type of things. But in the future democracy like this might be possible. I hope I'll live to see internet president election.

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  38. democracy is just the "un-worst" system
    (i think churchill mentioned that)

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  39. well what country do you think is going to use this system the most efficiently? Great post btw.

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  40. I agree with you 100%, ive been saying this for years but every adult tells me a system like this will never work. fuck them, wait till they die so we can actually make a difference.

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  41. Everything tends to decay and fall into disrepair. Every regime can be humane, it's just a matter of good will and general attitude in the society in question.

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  42. Democracy isn't time always the answer to problems.

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  43. i agree with zinc, i dont think virtual voting is a possible thing

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  44. Sounds fascinating, I wonder which country would benefit the most from this.

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  45. Some of it is pretty interesting. Although I don't think virtual voting would go far. Still some (as i said) interesting facts.

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  46. i hope that this is going to be in the future

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  47. Very interesting read, I like your outlook.

    Following for future updates! Supported!

    Garage Zoku

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  48. I believe that citizens should have more power when it comes to making decisions that will impact that citizen's place of residence and its surroundings. Power to the people!

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  49. I look forward to the future! Only time will tell what the government will be shaped into

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  50. I've been waiting to see what technology can do for democracy. It's great to see some progress being made!

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  51. something related happened recently, with that egyptian revolution of the people.

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  52. this all seems relevant to my interests

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  53. Good read! Pretty thoughtful stuff.

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  54. haha I think this is the trueth

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  55. Nice info, will look into this in the future.

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  56. I don't think it could be a good idea, unless it's something which is 100000000000000000% billion secure. People are pretty much always able to hack into different systems, and if the people did that it wouldn't be democracy.

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  57. The internet is not going to make us more democratic, it's just another way to keep the masses distracted.

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  58. There is still no reliability on this system, but it's interesting to see where technology will go from here.. *following*

    Unrelated Randomness

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  59. Direct democracy is a nice thought, like democracy in it's entirety. But it's so darn complex, I don't think it would be much better than having representatives. People would just vote for their own interests (lowering taxes on themselves, etc.) and have limited concern for the whole of the nation.

    But again, how much better or worse it would be is hard to know.. the representatives we have in current governments are little better or worse than what a direct democracy would produce, and they certainly have their own interests in place as well.

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  60. Don't think its the way forward for some countries, thanks for sharing though!

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  61. one more time, not disappointing your followers. very good article

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  62. Not sure where I stand on this but it's an interesting point. Keep up the good work. Following.

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  63. Some countries still need to develop into the more primitive methods before they can even think about integrating technology. And as many have said I agree the net is way too unsafe right now. There are incredible hackers able to hack virtually anything just for fun.

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  64. This is very good. But I'm worried if it would introduce a bias to those with the ability to use computers.

    But hey, weed the retards out and increase participation among the young. Sounds good!

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  65. I dont think its a good idea, cause this could easily be hacked and the result can be catastrophycal

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  66. Democracy is going to disappear. We will soon have a world dictatorship.

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  67. Ahh the pirate party, but honestly I don't think voting through technology is the proper way just yet, give it a few years and maybe it will become viable for township size council but defiantly not larger ones.

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  68. good question. i don't think representative democracy works as well as it should. given our technology, we should have a more direct democracy

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  69. Since my earlier post, I've been reading this, and I must say that thuganomics has got a very good point, haha. Why not, that's the question.

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  70. Very interesting question to be raised man. Who knows?!

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  71. I think the main problem with direct democracy is that the general population can sometimes not be as informed about certain issues as the people who are elected to represent them; although all too often the opposite is true, also. It means, though, that you get situations like the one in Switzerland where public referenda often lead to highly racist public policy.

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  72. Very interesting post, I love when things in school bring up such interesting thoughts and questions!

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  73. Democracy can't work in real life. But that's an issue of real people.

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  74. Fuk the politics, they are only talking, and make wars like Libia, we must be good for ourself if they don't...

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  75. Nice blog! I think you need to write more, i like it!

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  76. agree to mike and really nice info

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  77. It's funny how you want to live without government, but you need them for such simple things. Money suckers, man.

    +follow.

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  78. Although China has a one-party system, party members are able to vote in both local and national elections for party candidates. Voters say that they believe their votes do matter. Politicians run on their own virtue, rather than on smear campaigns. As Obama touched on recently, America's two-party system has devolved into a circus. A one party system might be more effective. But before anything can be done, we absolutely must stop campaign contributions from huge corporations and their owners. Our politicians are lapdogs of people that do not represent the interests of the average Joe.

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