It’s been said time and time again that the technology behind bitcoin, particularly the block chain, can go far beyond its use as a currency.
One such use: voting.
A report from website Version2 indicates that the Liberal Alliance in Denmark (a political party) will soon use the block chain for internal voting in Hvidovre, a suburb of Copenhagen.
The cunning aspect of the technology, is that it is incredibly hard to change the existing content, since every new datablock also has a reference to the previously block in the chain. That is why Liberal Alliance thinks the technology is particularly interesting in conjunction with e-elections.
The act of voting hasn’t changed a whole lot in the history of democracy. Even today, a paper ballot submitted counts as one’s vote.
The whole process requires trust. Traditional voting is subject to manipulation. Just look at the countless election re-counts that take place here in the United States.
“The block chain removes the need for trust, since the technology can run autonomous without interference from people, and it is at the same time open source and transparent, so that everybody can look under the hood, to take a look at how it functions. It doesn’t get any more liberal – so that’s why it’s an obvious choice for e-elections,” said Mikkel Freltoft Krogsholm, according to a supplied translation.
According to Version2:
The party says in a statement that a particular vote could be defined as a contract in a block chain, where anybody can keep an eye on the vote to comply with the contract framework.
It’s an interesting concept, but will it catch on?
“The block chain technology can be a bit tough to understand, but basically it’s about decentralizing and democratizing everything from money to organizations. So from a liberal ideologic point of view, it was a opportunity we just had to take,” said Krogsholm. “Liberal Alliance in Hvidovre will be the first local division for any party in the world to use this technology in their voting processes.”
[textmarker color=”C24000″]Image[/textmarker] Kim Bach