Elections via SMS

(via Engadget) The Swiss government is trying out voting via SMS. For now, they’re just testing it to see if it would really work — they are now voting for local speed limits.

Voters can also submit ballots by web, mail and traditional voting booths. Each voter will receive a unique User ID that they will have to enter before their “œballot” is accepted, which local officials hopewill encourage more young people to rock the vote.

This is a bold idea and very risky (read: prone to rigging) but if implemented correctly, could prove to be an innovative way to express one’s right to suffrage.

And I wonder (and hope) if this process is doable in our country. Considering that almost 1/4th (or is it 1/3?) of the population have mobile phones, this could very well solve the voter turn-out/voter participation problem. The bigger question here would be “how to effectively implement it”. The only pre-requisite I think that is important here would be the computerization of voter registration so that every registered voter can be issued their unique voter ID.

The COMELEC has been tasked to do automation of election and this could be a cheaper and more effective solution. I believe it’s high time they consider this option. Besides, the average Filipino is already an expert with SMS voting, with all that Pinoy.Big.Brother and other network contests you have.

What’s your take on this?

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