Estonia leads the way in voting technology. Or so the European Parliament would have us believe, as it explores ways to boost participation in European elections, which has fallen every election since the organisation was created. It's attempts to engage with young people came to a crashing halt, however. Why? Was there a system crash? Did the euro collapse? Did the peoples of southern Europe rise up in a socialist revolution? Well, no, not quite. The EU wrote this sentence:
'One way forward may be e-voting, especially among young voters who can do it between watching YouTube videos and checking Facebook'
Hear that? That is the sound of everyone aged sixteen to twenty-one who regularly browses the European Parliament's website logging off of their computers, going to the pub, drinking some cheap lager, and having rubbish sex. Yes, both of them. If the EU wants to go about attracting young voters, that sentence is not the way to do it. Their chances of attracting the reasonably intelligent people who would bother to vote have just imploded with the implication that they have nothing better to do with their lives than watch dogs on skateboards and ask what the homework was.
But, wait, it gets worse:
'However, he also said that e-voting is not the same as e-commerce - it's an essential part of democracy and if there's anything that potentially threatens the core values of it, like flawed elections, it must be avoided'
What part of the EU doesn't threaten the core values of democracy? The parliament can't propose legislation. Surely enhancing the power of elected representatives would be a better way of encouraging participation, rather than spending more public money on unnecessary 'trendy' modernisation programmes? Maybe if the parliament had power, there might be a point in voting for it?