Personal Democracy Plus Our premium content network. LEARN MORE You are not logged in. LOG IN NOW >

Ahead of Russian Elections, a Hope that Tech Will Keep Them Clean

BY Raphael Majma | Monday, February 27 2012

Polls are currently predicting that Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin will win the March 4 first round Presidential election by a comfortable margin, and some online activists are hoping that their election-monitoring projects will keep the election clean.

The Rosvybory project promises to train people in becoming election observers and help them with the paperwork necessary to qualify as official election monitors. The project is the latest product of Alexei Navalny, a blogger turned activist whose previous efforts, RosPil and RosYama, followed a similar vein of anti-corruption efforts. Currently, the site has registered over 16,000 citizen volunteers. (Through a spokesperson, Navalny declined to comment.)

Yabloko, a social liberal party, wants voters to be able to take these tools with them in to the polling station. The ”I am an Observer” Android and iPhone app, created by Appsolute in conjunction with the Yabloko party, provides information on what observers need to look out for when monitoring a polling station. The app gives monitors a “cheat sheet” for each period of the voting process, including before the station opens, during the voting period, and when ballots are counted. The app also lets users send video, photo, and text-based information to a team of lawyers that are tasked with acting against potential fraud.

Even Putin is taking advantage of the trend to try and stem public distrust over the veracity of the election. He is expected to provide approximately 35,000 election observers and has currently installed a massive network of 54,000 cameras to monitor election-polling centers. The total number of cameras will reach approximately 182,000, which will stream footage of “ballot boxes and vote-counting” on election day.

News Briefs

RSS Feed today >

First POST: Spoilers

How the GOP hasn't fixed its tech talent gap; the most tech-savvy elected official in America, and the most tech-savvy state-wide candidate; and much, much more. GO

thursday >

First POST: Hot Spots

How Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg is making inroads in China; labor protests among Uber drivers spread to more cities; new data about the prevalence of online harassment; and much, much more. GO

wednesday >

First POST: Reminders

Why the RNC hasn't managed to reboot how Republican campaigns use voter data; new ways of using phone banking to get out the vote; how the UK's digital director is still ahead of the e-govt curve; and much, much more. GO

tuesday >

First POST: Patient Zero

Monica Lewinsky emerges with a mission to fight cyber-bullying; Marc Andreessen explains his political philosophy; tech donors to MayDay PAC get pushback from Congressional incumbents; and much, much more. GO

monday >

First POST: Front Pagers

How Facebook's trending topics feed is wrecking political news; debating the FBI's need for an encrypted phone "backdoor"; democratizing crisis data; and much, much more. GO

More