07 Jan 1999: Charles Norrie Posting

From: Robert Felton <swinny@cix.compulink.co.uk>
Date: 1999/01/07
Subject: UKVoting Statement - Charles Norrie Posting
Newsgroups: uk.net.news.announce,uk.net.news.management


		UKVoting Statement - Charles Norrie Posting

UKVoting received a number of complaints from people about the following 
posting from Charles Norrie about voting for the Committee Elections:

> Xref: news.demon.co.uk uk.radio.amateur:20110
> Path: 
> tyndale.demon.co.uk!news.demon.co.uk!demon!geodeon.demon.co.uk!Charles
> From: vote98<vote98@geodeon.demon.co.uk>
> Newsgroups: uk.radio.amateur
> Subject: A chance to vote for the UK Usenet Committee
> Date: Fri, 11 Dec 1998 19:35:27 +0000
> Sender: Charles Norrie <Charles@geodeon.demon.co.uk>
> Message-ID: <JSmdYxA$PXc2EwRp@geodeon.demon.co.uk>
> References: <74oqke$bom$12@taliesin.netcom.net.uk>
> NNTP-Posting-Host: geodeon.demon.co.uk
> X-NNTP-Posting-Host: geodeon.demon.co.uk:
> X-Trace: news.demon.co.uk 913404982 nnrp-08:9612 NO-IDENT
>  geodeon.demon.co.uk:
> X-Complaints-To: abuse@demon.net
> MIME-Version: 1.0
> X-Newsreader: Turnpike (32) Trial Version 3.05 
> <3uGaSsFILE2QtZ5+mjFnLNfCAg>
> Lines: 74
> Please Vote in The 1998 Elections for Members of the UK Usenet
> Committee.
> Please read this
> As somebody who uses this uk newsgroup, you have until midnight to
> register your vote for a member of the Committee which manages the UK
> newsgroups.
> It is important to exercise your vote for the Committee makes the
> decisions in setting up new newgroups or changing their Charters.
> Please vote. You must do it by midnight tonight. 
> As your vote will take a few minutes to arrive at the 'ballot box',
> please vote as soon as possible.
> Unfortunately, it is not quite straightforward.
> (1) Please subscribe to  uk.net.news.announce   newsgroup
> (2) In that newsgroup find a thread called 
>     (It may say 1st call or 2nd call as well)
>     This is your electronic voting paper.
> (3) Open it and it contains instructions, candidates details and the 
>     voting 'paper'.
> (4) Please read the details of the candidates.
>     The voting 'paper' is at the bottom. 
> (5) Please fill in the boxes with your choice using the numbers 1 
> (best)       to 7 (worst)
>     I shall be voting:
>        Peter Parry      [ 4 ]
>        Peter Bowyer     [ 3 ]
>        Andy Mabbett     [ 5 ]
>        Richard Ashton   [ 6 ]
>        Charles Lindsey  [ 7 ]
>        Iain Bowen       [ 1 ]
>        Rod Begbie       [ 2 ] 
>     As I think this is the best choice of candidates.
> (6) You don't have to fill in all the numbers, but don't use the same   
>      number twice, and start at 1.
> (7) To record your vote. Press the reply and make sure it goes to 
>     your out tray, sign onto your service provider and off goes your
>     vote.  And it's done.

UKVoting is aware of this message being posted to the following groups 
within the uk hierarchy:

games.trading-cards.marketplace, games.video.playstation, politics.misc,
media.dvd, people.gothic, local.cumbria, sport.football, comp.sys.mac, 
comp.os.linux, adverts.computer, media.tv.sky, rec.cars.maintenance,
gay-lesbian-bi, telecom.mobile, religion.misc, games.computer.quake2, 
rec.motorcycles, people.teens, railway, adverts.personals, 
media.radio.archers, telecom, education.staffroom, uk.radio.amateur

UKVoting notes the following about this posting:

1) The statement stated that the vote finished at midnight on the day of 
   posting when there was actually another 24hrs until the voting 

2) The posting actually suggested how people should vote but it did 
   actually tell people to read the candidates statements before they 

3) The posting was made very near the end of the voting period and so the 
   effect should be negligible.
UKVoting has come to the following conclusion:  
1) The posting is not a clear copy of the Call For Votes but a completely
   new document mentioning the names of the candidates; it further tells
    people to read the candidates' blurb before voting.

2) The posting was made within the last 36 hours of the voting period. The
   effect of the posting can be measured and analysed with some measure of

    There are 203 valid votes for the Committee Elections. Only 10 votes
    were received after the posting in question. An examination of the
    votes has shown that those 10 votes have not materially affected the 
    final results.

    Also none of the valid votes received following the posting by Charles
    Norrie actually followed the voting preferences suggested in his
    posting. This allows us to state with some confidence that the posting 
    has not affected the final results of the elections.


1. The vote will not be declared NULL & VOID.
2. This posting will not be declared as VOTING FRAUD.
3. In the opinion of the votetakers, this posting has not affected the
   final result.


1. UKVoting will make a posting as soon as possible in order to clarify
   the definition of VOTING FRAUD as we interpret it.
2. The posting in question included suggestions telling people how they
   should vote. It may be that this is considered possibly dangerous
   within the democratic process of elections. It should be considered by
   the uk.* hierarchy readers whether they want to take action in order to
   be able to discourage these kind of postings in the future.   


Swinny - Rob Felton
Co-Ordinator, UKVoting (mailto:ukvoting@usenet.org.uk)

Version: 2.6


You can also see the raw article.
Back ot the UKVoting homepage