Essays on Knowledge and Society Assignment

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The paper 'Knowledge and Society' is a wonderful example of a Macro and Microeconomics Assignment. McGaley & McCarthy (2004) state that one of the main elements of an electronic voting system is ethical concerns. Many countries all over the world are adopting the use of the electronic voting system. The developed countries are leading inefficiency in the use of electronic voting as Alvarez & Hall (2004) note. Electronic voting is widely accepted because of its reliability and efficiency. There are advantages and disadvantages that come with using electronic voting as discussed below.

This essay also discusses the reasons why Australia is still using pencil and paper voting for the time being. Advantages of the electronic voting system over pencil and paper voting Mercuri (2005) explains that the electronic voting system allows voters to transmit their secret voted ballots to the officials in charge of the elections. This system is considered more secure than the paperwork voting system. They have very low chances of manipulation, which is, rigging. Engineers have continuously improved the feasibility of this voting system (electronic voting system) in order to make it more user-friendly and reliable system.

Tokaji (2004) continues to assert that the system and software are well designed making it to be very convenient, this makes voters use their own equipment using very little time and skills to finish voting. This system is very mobile, voters can vote any time anywhere, they are or they want to vote. This is enhanced by the presence of mobile devices such as the Samsung Galaxy, iPad, and iPhone. Disadvantages of the electronic voting system over pencil and paper voting Despite the obvious merits of this voting system, as Shamos (2004) alleges that critics have been concerned with the security of electronic voting; vulnerable security is the main demerit of this system.

Without proper backup, the system may fail to function thereby leading to failure in voting, this may bring the whole process to a standstill in case of security failure in general elections. Challener et al. (2000) unearth that, unequal access to internet sources is another disadvantage, not every person may have access to the internet or even devices to access the internet to vote, and low salaried persons may not afford equipment for the same.

Illiteracy in the use of an electronic voting system may make this system derail. Virus to the electronic equipment and system is rampant. In essence, there is no electronic voting system that has ever been used alone in any country, it is usually backed up by manual or paperwork voting system. McGaley & McCarthy (2004) point out that, this system of electronic voting is not reliable on its own due to security failures. Reasons why Australia is staying with pencil and paper voting for the time being As Orr et al.

(2003) point, Australia has experienced mixed reactions from the use of electronic voting systems. One of the reasons why it is staying with pencil and paper voting is the security concern that has rocked the electronic system. Kirkby (2012) explain that this has made the country to use the manual system as it focuses to improve the electronic voting system. Another reason is the frequency of voting in Australia. This country has a frequent voting period whereby it goes to voting almost every three years for its different political and government structures.

This is a very short time, which, according to the elections commission, favors the pencil and paper voting. Besides, the country has several levels and categories of voting, there are many posts of voting and this system is used for the lower levels that elections are held frequently.


Alvarez, R, M., & Hall, T, E, (2004), Point, click, and vote: The future of Internet voting, Brookings Institution Press.

Challener, D, C, Kelley, R, A, & Newman, P, E, (2000), U.S Patent No, 6,081,793: Washington, DC: U.S, Patent and Trademark Office.

Kirkby, D, (2012), Alice Henry: the power of pen and voice: the life of an Australian-American labor reformer, Cambridge University Press.

McGaley, M, & McCarthy, J, (2004), Transparency and e-Voting: Democratic vs. commercial interests, Electronic Voting in Europe, 47, 153-163.

Mercuri, R. (2005), Electronic voting, URL http://www notablesoftware. com/evote. html (visited 2004, December 6).

Orr, G. (2004), Ritual and Aesthetic in Electoral Law, The Fed. L. Rev., 32, 425.

Orr, G., Mercurio, B., & Williams, G, (2003), Australian electoral law: a stocktake. Election Law Journal, 2(3), 383-402.

Shamos, M, I, (2004, April), Paper vs electronic voting records-an assessment: In Proceedings of the 14th ACM Conference on Computers, Freedom and Privacy.

Tokaji, D. P. (2004), the paperless chase: Electronic voting and democratic values.

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