Artificial Intelligence and the Secret Ballot

AI and Society (forthcoming)
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In this paper, we argue that because of the advent of Artificial Intelligence, the secret ballot is now much less effective at protecting voters from voting related instances of social ostracism and social punishment. If one has access to vast amounts of data about specific electors, then it is possible, at least with respect to a significant subset of electors, to infer with high levels of accuracy how they voted in a past election. Since the accuracy levels of Artificial Intelligence are so high, the practical consequences of someone inferring one’s vote are identical to the practical consequences of having one’s vote revealed directly under an open voting regime. Therefore, if one thinks that the secret ballot is at least partly justified because it protects electors against voting related social ostracism and social punishment, one should be morally troubled by how Artificial Intelligence today can be used to infer individual electors’ past voting behaviour.

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Author Profiles

Jakob Mainz
Aalborg University (PhD)
Jørn Sønderholm
Aalborg University

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References found in this work

Algorithmic Political Bias in Artificial Intelligence Systems.Uwe Peters - 2022 - Philosophy and Technology 35 (2):1-23.
On Democracy.Robert A. Dahl - 1998 - Yale University Press.
Algorithms, Manipulation, and Democracy.Thomas Christiano - 2022 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 52 (1):109-124.

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