Tuesday, 9 February 2010

Ideas for the Voter Interface

The design of the web site interface that would allow us to vote could have an enormous influence over how effective Interactive Democracy would be. Here are some thoughts:

  1. It should be easy to use

  2. It should be split between questions, ePetitions and Referenda for local, national and supra-national votes

  3. Each proposal should allow comments structured around Plus, Minus and Interesting points

  4. Each proposal should allow questions to be asked, creating a thread of answers

  5. Comments arising from Parliamentary debate should be given priority on any referenda issue

  6. Comments from the government should also be highlighted (these may relate to timescales, funding and practical difficulties)

  7. Comments made by MPs should carry their name

  8. Links to Government and Parliamentary web pages should be allowed, to facilitate the presentation of good quality background information

  9. Security should be similar to that used by Internet Banks, with a user name and password system to allow access

  10. The search facility on the site should not introduce bias and should be approved by a Parliamentary technical committee

  11. A complaints system should be available to highlight swearing and abusive comments which can then be removed by the web master - there may be escalating sanctions against repeat offenders

It's worth noting that other web sites may hold alternative debates and present their own information. Obviously these can be found by anyone using a search engine but they shouldn't have links placed on the Voting Interface. Only approved and quality checked statistics and reports should be presented on this central web site.

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