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Voting Proposals

Below are some ideas that have been discussed and are offered as proposals for making public server voting run smoother and more fairly.

Voting Timeline

Usually in Public Server games, players are eager to begin building. Sometimes, this becomes a problem as voting is rushed to move forward into the construction stage. I propose the following guidelines in determining when to start and stop voting:

  • Many plans call for rail systems that are only available after a certain year. In these cases, the voting will usually be ended around the same time as that technology becomes available (for example, maglev plans in 2022). Other plans rely on technology that will be made obsolete if the vote takes too long to complete. It should be determined before a new game is created what technology will be used during the next game, and mark that technology as a fixed plan requirement. The game start date for the next game will be adjusted based on the technology chosen, or vehicle expiration will be removed if necessary.
  • The voting board should open at a specific time. No votes cast before that time will be honored. The time will be published on the in-game message board.
  • The voting board should close at a specific time. When that time comes, votes will be tallied, and a winner will be declared. In the event of a tie, a pre-determined tie-break will occur. That tie-break can include any of the following (or other) factors:
  • Authors present at vote end will be preferred over those not currently active in the game or IRC
  • Authors whose plans have won recently will defer to the other authors (allowing different authors to be chosen)
  • Eliminate all other plans and have a revote, with a pre-determined tie-break end.
  • Any plans submitted after the voting has commenced may be accepted. Under no circumstances will the voting be reset to accomodate these latecomers. To ensure a fair vote for a plan, it is best to make it available as early as possible, to allow time for changes and explanations prior to the vote starting.
  • Any plans submitted before the voting board is opened must not change once voting has started. Any plans that are changed will have their votes removed, and voters scores will be adjusted accordingly. These changes include changes to the rail and station positions, signalling, or any signage assoicated with the plan.
  • Authors who wish to modify their plan after voting has started without resetting the vote may do so by submitting a second copy of their plan, which includes the changes. Note that these plans are independant, and will be counted separately. This behavior is discouraged as it may cause voters to split their votes over the two versions of the plan, resulting in neither being chosen.

Borda Count Voting

One of the ideas that has been discussed among the members is using the Borda Count system.

In Borda voting, each voter ranks N plans in order of preference, giving N points to their favorite, N-1 to their next favorite, and continue until they give a plan 1 point. After voting closes, the points are tallied, and the plan with the most points wins.

For example:

Voter Plan A Plan B Plan C Plan D
Voter 1 4 3 2 1
Voter 2 1 4 3 2
Voter 3 4 1 3 2
Voter 4 1 2 3 4
Totals 10 10 11 9

In this case, Plan C would win the vote, because it received the highest number of votes. Note that nobody rated that plan as the best one (it received no 4-vote), but it was generally preferred over the other plans.

If a large number of plans are offered, rather than rank all of them, it may be decided to limit how many votes each voter gets, and any remaining plans would receive 0 votes. In the above example if each person voted for their favorite 3:

Voter Plan A Plan B Plan C Plan D
Voter 1 3 2 1
Voter 2 3 2 1
Voter 3 3 2 1
Voter 4 1 2 3
Totals 6 6 7 5

Or if only their favorite 2:

Voter Plan A Plan B Plan C Plan D
Voter 1 2 1
Voter 2 2 1
Voter 3 2 1
Voter 4 1 2
Totals 4 3 3 2

You can see that adjusting the number of votes being cast can affect the outcome. It will be decided when voting starts how many votes will be cast per voter.

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