My name is danah boyd and I'm a Principal Researcher at Microsoft Research and the founder/president of Data & Society. Buzzwords in my world include: privacy, context, youth culture, social media, big data. I use this blog to express random thoughts about whatever I'm thinking.

Relevant links:

Archive

election woes

This election is going to suck. I have yet to receive my little packet of information on the candidates and the propositions; none of my roommates have, even though our friends have. I started getting anxious, wondering if it was possible that someone de-registered me. I voted last winter – can you de-register? Of course, i thought that i registered permanent absentee but my roommate received an absentee and i haven’t. Then again, i think i registered like 10 times when i moved here out of anxiety.

A friend of mine is receiving loads of election materials to a new nonexistent roommate with a peculiar name. Apparently, people are registering folks who don’t exist.

In my birth state, Nader is being kicked off the ballot for fraudulent signatures used to get him there, in the order of 25,000 fake signatures – apparently Mickey Mouse is now voting.

In swing states, it appears as though the RNC is funding voter registration volunteers to tear up registration forms if they’re marked Democratic.

The worst part is that there will only be more horror stories between now and November 2. This election will be nasty.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

11 comments to election woes

  • I am not an American and am not in US, but recently I read a lot on the US presidential election. I am surprised to find there are so many issues these two men disagree about. I do not know who take his position first, but it seems that on every debatable issue, if one takes a position, the other would take the opposite. It gives me the impression that they do not bother to choose which position to take, but they do bother in explaining to the pubic why they choose the position. It is like that one toss a coin and the head turn out, and then makes his whole effort to explain why the head turns out not tail.

  • Jeff

    i’m going to leave the sf/california voter guides on your desk on monday. in the meantime, the state voter’s guide is available at http://www.voterguide.ss.ca.gov/ and the SF guide at http://www.sfgov.org/site/election_index.asp

  • What is the registered party affiliation of your non-existent roommate?

  • kt

    Um, This election is not going to suck. Yes, the fearmongers will try every trick to get people to stay home. Yes, it may be difficult for some people to cast their ballots. But let’s keep putting out silly joy to their hopeless fear.

    They want people to stay home out of disgust. Don’t spread it. Please.

    Wear something silly for the next 2.5 weeks. Make people laugh. Roll your eyes at anything Rove tries “Do they REALLY think that is gonna work???” Hope is on the way!!!!

  • joe

    kt: Get bent… it’s not fearmongering, it’s reality. No one should stay home, they should hit the fucking streets.

    Kt, you are obviously not involved with the election or election protection in any capacity. For those of us who are, there are a few things we see that support danah’s intution that this election is freakin’ hosed:

    1) The race is very close (or the pollsters are very very bad at what they do… which is totally possible).
    2) There are more registered voters that every before, which means the planning to date cannot possibly be adequate.
    3) There are a ton of reports about fraud, misdeed and bad judgment on the part of partisan actors and elected officials. (It’s not even Election Day yet!)
    4) There are a slew of new rules passed and implemented under the Help America Vote Act… which is turning moreso into the “Help America Meltdown by throwing a bunch of money and regulations that don’t do much at the States Act”.
    5) 30% of all voters will vote using voting machines that store the “official record” of the vote in computer memory instead of a permanent indellible manifestation of voter intent.
    6) Because of 5, there will be no ability for “meaningful recounts” in areas that employ this technology.

    In short: Expect a “Florida 2000” in at least 5 separate states where the results will be very close and procedural, technical and legal challenges will hold up the reporting of official results for anywhere from one week to a month. Expect nuclear war with lawyers. Believe that.

    Pray for a landslide… that’s the only way it won’t get messy.

  • Wendy

    Hey danah-

    Some advice from the sf county web page: =)

    If you are unsure about your voting status call the Elections Office directly at (415) 554-4375.

    I’ve mailed in my absentee ballot. Guess who I voted for?

  • Although living in Canada I have been following the US Presidential race with interest.

    Reports of voter registration irregularities, computer voting systems with no audit trail etc is something one expects to hear of a third world country not a proponent of democracy and freedom. I have experienced voting systems in England and Canada and am not impressed.

  • tony

    My guess on this election,things never happen as expected or predicted. Someone will win by at least 5%(who that will be depends on the next 3 weeks) and I doubt a replay of 2000 will occur.

    Oh, there will be much yelling and cries of fraud but that’s going to be a fact of life now(the media saw great ratings last time,expect more coverage). The supreme court is biased anyway,things won’t change thru the courts.

    Hold on to yer hats!

  • David Fernandes

    maybe it’s nothing new but more and more I’m under the impression that people don’t vote anymore for the candidate they do like but instead vote against the one they despise.
    This was particularly true for Spain, France and the United States during their last elections. I think it’s scary.
    I can’t help but think that the action of some “artists” singing against one candidate is rather undemocratic.
    I’m starting to think that a democratic vote should remain an egoist action. Voters should remain blind and deaf to all the fuss around

    I’m French living in the States / not allowed to vote so…best wishes for this election.

  • Adam Heenan

    Hi Danah,
    I stumbled across your blog when searching for “My So Called Blog” which I am creating a lesson plan around adolescent use of the internet for social and identiy construction. I am also reading Kate Hellenga’s “Social Spaces” (2001), and Sandra Calvert’s “Identity Construction on the Internet” (2002?). Interesting reads if you get the chance.
    The lesson is for a Youth and Media seminar I am participating in at Northern Illinois University with Educational Psychologist Dr. Lee Shumow.
    I was wondering if you were planning on going to American Educational Research Association (AERA) in April. If you are we are participating in a symposium with other scholars in the field of adolescents and media. If you would like more info, go ahead and email me.
    Ciao,
    Adam Heenan

  • Adam Heenan

    Hi Danah,
    I stumbled across your blog when searching for “My So Called Blog” which I am creating a lesson plan around adolescent use of the internet for social and identiy construction. I am also reading Kate Hellenga’s “Social Spaces” (2001), and Sandra Calvert’s “Identity Construction on the Internet” (2002?). Interesting reads if you get the chance.
    The lesson is for a Youth and Media seminar I am participating in at Northern Illinois University with Educational Psychologist Dr. Lee Shumow.
    I was wondering if you were planning on going to American Educational Research Association (AERA) in April. If you are we are participating in a symposium with other scholars in the field of adolescents and media. If you would like more info, go ahead and email me.
    Ciao,
    Adam Heenan