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Voting On Blockchain Closest Thing To Ancient Greek Democracy

June 17, 2020
Ross Peili


Voting On Blockchain Closest Thing To Ancient Greek Democracy

Voting on blockchain has been one of the first and most utilized use-cases aside financial tools for tech adopters. Although the concept is pretty self-explanatory, offering perks of immutability, trustless registry, and a transparent ledger to log events impossible to be assessed by one single man or entity, not everyone aware of it is actually using it.

In a nutshell, the voting process relies on citizens’ physical submissions, which are later examined by a supposedly unbiased team of valuators, before the results are eventually released by a centralized authoritarian watchdog usually responsible for the process.

The problem with the above mechanism is that we can’t be really sure about the results since the central authority will issue only the final numbers, disregarding detailed vote data. The same goes for the trusted evaluation party, which is usually affiliated or cherry-picked by the central control unit in addition to the already pre-directed process. 

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So how do we solve this problem of unbiased division as old as mankind’s history itself? There is only one option, and it should be natural by now, that it’s blockchain technology for it managed to solve the byzantine general’s problem, which on its own subjects a mathematical problem tackling immutability and trust from its core.

With a distributed ledger architecture, not only we could make sure that only one vote per voter is evaluated, but we can also see exactly how many netizens voted for whom, when, and under which conditions (what platforms, wallets, kyc they used, etc.)

Sure, public blockchains such as Bitcoin and Ethereum are way too transparent for voters, hence special smart-contracts and blockchain layers, as well as interoperability with private DLTs and other IPFS, make sure that we can both have a trustless voting mechanism while securing voters’ personal technopolitical angle.

Some of the most popular governments to use blockchain for elections voting include but are not limited to the U.S., Russia, and Sierra Leone while the number of countries looking into adopting the technology in question increases by the hour. 

Of course, blockchain voting is not tethered to politics in any case, with blockchain voting being a popular mechanism to settle disputes in hi-tech companies and online communities.

In some sense, one could say that blockchain voting brings the Ancient Greek Democracy back to the surface of physical and digital reality, and I mean the ‘real deal’ considering the political landscape is far from unbiased even if branded as “democracy” nowadays.

Proof-Of-Stake (PoS), and other staking-oriented consensus mechanisms acting as the soul of a blockchain already utilize decentralized voting for internal management, and decentralized decision making.   

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Recently a Boston-based voting app announced that their ap used at the virtual Arizona State Republican Party convention – which went online due to the ongoing pandemic – where over 1,100 votes were submitted on May 9th. 

Voatz app had previously used in Utah state and county Republican conventions accumulating over 7,000 votes last year. 

“We believe deeply in expanding access to voting, and with many voters’ health at risk, we are proud to leverage our experience to support the Arizona Republican Party’s mandate to represent their delegates’ voices.”Nimit Sawhney CEO at Voatz said.

Putting coronavirus and the importance for in-house voting aside, blockchain voting is essential in our times, especially when analogizing the disputes subjecting the integrity of the Trump administration election which was allegedly tampered by Russian and S. Korean hackers using sophisticated software.

Whether you think votes are subject to cheating nowadays or you’re convinced voting was always fixed by the government, blockchain technology solves that problem in the most unbiased fashion, and there is absolutely no good reason as to why should anyone deny it.

Let me know your thoughts in the comments section below, or feel free to hit me on Twitter.