Oscar Troubles: Online Balloting Confusing Some Members; Controversy Over Best Song Omissions
OSCARS: Academy Sets Details For Final Vote; Online Voters Given New Deadline To Switch To Paper Ballots
After reporting on all the problems regarding the registration process for the Academy Of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences’ initial foray into the perilous world of online voting for Oscars this year, and then breaking the story about paper ballots being sent automatically to any voter who didn’t register or didn’t want to attempt voting online, there still seems to be frustration on the part of a number of voters.
Since the voting period opened for nominations on December 17th (it runs thorugh January 3rd) , some disgruntled members have told me it just isn’t working very well. As my colleague Mike Fleming reported the site was even completely down early in the process. The system, which requires members to have a special password (this in addition to their regular password that gains them entrance into the Academy’s website) and a code supplied by a phone call to an appointed phone number only when they actually set out to vote, is designed specifically for the Academy by a company, Everyone Counts (the result of an 18-month search), that does the same thing for the U.S. government with clients including the Department of Defense. It’s so loaded with specific safeguards and military-level encryption methods to keep hackers and imposters out that it is causing extreme frustration for some who have tried to vote. As a result some fear it could supress voter turnout although we won’t know since the Academy has never released figures of how many actually vote.
Academy Gives Details Of Its May Membership Meeting
“It’s so poorly conceived. When you think about it I probably won’t vote this round as it’s too much trouble. They had to reset my password as it wasn’t taking it. This requires me to write everything down and know where I put it,” said one voter who has a vested interest in the race as they represent a couple of contenders. “Next year I am signing up for a paper ballot.” This person did email me earlier today to say they finally voted but only after getting TWO security codes via text message. The first was incorrect but the second finally worked and enabled them to vote, “but I’m pissed off about it”.
The code that voters get only comes up AFTER you get your VIN and then password correct. A warning then comes up and says , “A one-time security code has been generated for you. You should receive this code via phone call or text message depending on the preference you selected during the Electronic Voting Registration process. If you do not receive this code within 15 minutes, please click the ‘Send New Code’ link and a new code will be generated and sent to you”. Problem is the voter must be by the phone number provided for a call verification before getting the code. The bottom line is many members just don’t realize the process they signed up for can be more complicated than writing down a few names and pressing ‘send’, which is the way it works for other voting organizations that don’t provide the kind of hacker temptations of the Oscars.