Brazilian government launches election apps

Brazilian government launches election apps

Summary: The tools are aimed at involving citizens in the upcoming elections in October.

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As campaigning for the upcoming general election kicks off in Brazil, the government has launched a range of apps intended to improve citizen engagement and inclusion in the process.

The Superior Electoral Court (TSE in the Portuguese acronym) will make three mobile apps available to provide information about candidates and the actual voting process, as well as results. All apps will be available in Android, iOS and Windows Phone versions.

The first tool - and perhaps the most interesting of the three apps - was launched on Friday (18) and provides detailed information about the candidates. The elections to be held in October will not only elect the president, but also the national Congress, state governors and state legislatures and involve some 24,000 candidates across the country.

Through the TSE app, citizens are able to see the candidate's basic information such as full name, his or her party and any coalitions associated to it. The TSE website, however, has a section that displays more detailed data about the contenders such as declared assets and forecast campaign spending - but it is not linked to the app.

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Screenshot of the Brazilian election app
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Screenshot of the Brazilian election app, showing candidate details

 

A separate application will inform citizens about the voting process in Brazil, where voting is compulsory, such as wards and electoral divisions and will use geo positioning to inform the best route to get to the voting location. This app is not yet available.

Another tool, also yet to be released, will inform real-time results once the actual election starts. Since 1996, voting in Brazil uses compact, portable voting devices and a centralized process that is able to process even close elections within hours.

Topics: Mobility, Apps, Government

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3 comments
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  • Sounds dangerous

    The government providing information about candidates sounds like a really bad idea. Who decides what goes in there and how it's worded?
    Buster Friendly
    • It's worked that way in California for a very long time

      Candidates and parties furnish their own info which the state publishes together with the voluminous analysis, text, and arguments for and against ballot propositions. A copy of the resulting booklet is mailed to every registered voter in the state. Been happening twice every even numbered year for longer than I've been alive.
      John L. Ries
    • Not a problem in the Brazilian electoral system

      The laws that regulate the electoral process in Brazil specify lots of data that any candidate must supply in order to have his or her candidacy officially registered and being legally able to stand for election. Other data come from the government databases, such as the Central Bank and Serpro (the federal data processing service). Only plain objective data are provided, they are highly standardized, and they ultimately come from the candidates themselves and their political parties. Some examples: former offices held, previous convictions, and personal wealth (as declared to the Federal Revenue Secretariat, the Brazilian equivalent to the IRS).

      I can't see how that would be a problem or how those data could be manipulated. On the contrary, it serves a very important social function in making the electoral process transparent and helping voters make an informed decision.
      goyta