Associated Press will Publish U.S. Election Results on Blockchain
One of the key features in the United States General Election is blockchain technology. Even though the technology will not play a role in choosing the next Commander-in-Chief, it can at least provide updates about the process in real-time. The Associated Press (AP) made an official announcement, disclosing that they had signed a deal for directly providing election results to an immutable blockchain. According to the report, the initiative was introduced by the news source through a partnership with a blockchain-based encyclopedia, known as Everipedia. Results will be displayed in real-time by the encyclopedia, thanks to its underlying EOS blockchain infrastructure and additional assistance from blockchain firm Chainlink.
The Associated Press’ Director of Data Licensing, Dwayne Desaulniers, explained that this initiative would enable them to blaze the trail for counting of voting and declaration of election winners. Since 1984, the company has held the responsibility of counting and reporting votes. It stated that using blockchain technology would ensure greater trust and transparency in the electoral process. An Everipedia’s representative explained that AP would have to cryptographically sign its cryptographic keys to the company’s data oracle powered by Chain-link, as part of the process. With the help of this oracle, they will be able to directly connect the results of the election to a blockchain.
The representative further said that the platform would be made available to industry-leading organizations for directly publishing data feeds on the blockchain. They said that it could also assist data publishing companies in bolstering their processes. Even though this means that blockchain will play some part in the election process, it is a far cry from what it could have been used for. A patent had been filed by the United States Postal Service (USPS) earlier this year for a blockchain-based voting system, after fears that its funding might be cut by Donald Trump.
The conflict between the government and postal service occurred on the basis of mail-in voting, which is deemed fraudulent by the White House. When speaking to reporters, the President had gone as far as hinting that he could win the war by cutting funding for the postal service, as it could indicate once and for all that postal services were just not capable of handling universal mail-in voting. Even though a lot of people believe that he was just trying to boost his chances of re-election, the postal service didn’t want to take the risk. Therefore, it filed the patent and explained that mail-in voting would become safer through blockchain incorporation instead of physical polling stations.
However, the blockchain-based voting system wasn’t accepted. Tech experts were very skeptical about the project and most pointed out that this kind of system doesn’t have any value in the long-term. Nonetheless, the simple fact that blockchain technology was taken into consideration is undoubtedly encouraging because it shows that it could be used in future elections. This technology seems to be becoming more and more mainstream, with various industries using it for one purpose or the other.