Thu 18 May 2017 4:46AM

Sincere Score Voting is a good strategy

CS Clay Shentrup Public Seen by 395

I forgot all about this page.

It shows that normalized sincere Score Voting is a better strategy than bullet voting, on average. /cc @kristineb

But what's also interesting is we point out on another page.

> Now consider that a [normalized] sincere Range Voting ballot [has about 91% (or more) of the effectiveness of a perfectly strategic vote (in the 3-candidate study; 80% or more in the 5-candidate case), and it requires essentially no thought and no math.

In other words, even if the theoretical best strategy is to carefully calculate your "approval threshold" and max/min-score the candidates around it, a typical voter without advanced math expertise is so likely to mess that up that a sincere vote is actually better. Better not just than a bullet vote, but better than an optimal "approval" vote.


Sara Wolf Mon 22 May 2017 11:12PM

Bullet Voting=giving a max score to only one candidate and min scores to the others. Basically plurality voting on a score ballot.

Any basic thought experiment on how a 3rd party voter would want to vote on a Plain Score Vote/Range Voting election shows that bullet voting isn't going to be a good choice in many situations. This is especially obvious if there are multiple candidates with some appeal (like a primary.) If there are multiple candidates that would be acceptable or better than the bad guys, a basic voter without experience but with an idea that they should think about strategy will come to the conclusion that they should show some nuanced support for multiple candidates. The strategic vote I would expect would be max scores for the favored underdogs and then also a max score for the preferred front runner with medium scores for other front runners that might be acceptable.

Average voters using a Star Vote Ballot (Score Runoff=SRV=Star Voting) would absolutely be able to determine that bullet voting is a bad strategy unless they honestly love one candidate and hate the rest. The runoff clearly means that voters who bullet vote lose their vote in the runoff if their favorite isn't in the top 2. Huge backfire! This is why honesty IS the best strategy!

The fact that the Sightline article made the bullet voting argument about Plain Score Voting and then also about Score Runoff Voting (Star Voting) feels like deliberate misinformation and was a huge red flag for me. Has Kristin responded to this concern anywhere so far?


William WAUGH Mon 26 Jun 2017 10:59PM

I haven't worked sufficient count of examples to prove this, but I think that the best strategy in Score is to give your compromise candidate a score of (max - f * (max - min)) where f is the proportion of the voters you think are going to support your favorite candidate. So for example Nader 50, Gore 49, Bush -50 if I expect Nader to poll 1%.