Law Research Seminar Series - Voteauction: Encountering The Aporia Of The Demos

When:
Venue: Birkbeck 30 Russell Square, Room 101
Booking details: Free entry; booking required

Voteauction: Encountering The Aporia Of The Demos

Speaker: Dr Jeremy Pilcher, School of Law, Birkbeck

Digital and online technologies are not only used by insurgent social movements to disseminate information in innovative ways but are also generative of distinctive forms in which activist groups may be organised. Social networking sites introduced widespread and effective strategic voting in the United States of America’s Presidential election of 2000. The aim of these sites was to enable voters in different states to swap votes. In 2007 a federal appeals court decided that at least one form of these vote-swapping sites were constitutionally protected. Online vote swapping has since been advocated or has occurred in other countries around the world, including Canada and the United Kingdom. Even more controversially, ‘Voteauction’ by Ubermorgen.com was a website asserting it enabled individuals to buy and sell their votes in the 2000 Presidential election in the United States of America. Ubermorgen.com declared the work legal art after it was shut down before voting took place. These political actions brought into question the politics of electoral boundaries. ‘Voteauction’ invited those who encountered it to focus on how legal systems structure democracy and reflect on the implications of real-time technologies for the recursive relationship between the law and society.

Law Research Seminars are held on Wednesdays at lunchtime. The seminars are free and open to the public, and a light lunch is provided. For more information please contact law-events@bbk.ac.uk.

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