Until CSM8, the voting algorithm has always been first-past-the-post. It’s not a great system. It’s not terrible. But it does ensure that organized groups can easily trounce unorganized groups in getting their candidates through. Which is something CCP and the CSM want to move away from. They want the less organized to have some hope of getting through their candidates. Which is fine. As long as a proper voting system is to be implemented, one that doesn’t disenfranchise votes of the organized. (Players organizing should always be encouraged.)
There’s been some call for a single transferable vote system. Twice, though, CCP Veritas has mentioned (enthusiastically) the Schulze method (or perhaps the Schulze STV, where multiple winners are determined, as in CSM elections.)
Hans seems suddenly concerned and is asking the community to post in the following thread, their thoughts on a new voting system. I’m assuming because CCP is going ahead with voting system reform, without CSM or player input.
I can’t say I’m particularly surprised. I would be very surprised if it wasn’t the Schulze system being implemented. Veritas seemed super keen on Schulze; it’s a non-trivial algorithm, and Veritas is attracted to non-trivial problems.
I don’t think we’re going to get a lot of say in the matter. As fussed as I probably should be, I’m not feeling all that fussed about the prospect of a new voting system. I just hope that CCP is not going to assume this is their panacea, and that increased voter awareness and education is no longer needed.
What I would like to see, is all the voting results released after the election. It’s not a privacy issue, because you release each vote, not who made the vote. It allows independent verification of the results. It ensures the algorithm was coded properly, and that the system is implement properly. Voting systems require oversight. This is certainly no skin off CCP’s back and has no privacy concerns. Each vote is anonymous. And releasing the data is not much more than a dump of the voting tables, a few hours work at most to retrieve and release the data. (Hell, you can even get people playing with the results using different voting systems, to see how different systems capture different results.) One more piece of transparency, creates more faith in the playerbase.
You can read more of Poetic Stanziel’s opinions at his Poetic Discourse blog.