[EM] NYTimes.com Article: French Twist: A Fair Way to Pick Oscars?

Forest Simmons fsimmons at pcc.edu
Mon Mar 18 14:28:13 PST 2002

This Rick Lyman got the whole thing garbled.

Steven Abrams sent me a copy of the article that he and Paul Hager
co-authored.  It looks like this Lyman character thought he could improve
on it.  In the process he messed it up, claiming that Condorcet invented
Approval, that Hager co-authored the book (instead of the article) , etc.

>From my experience this is pretty typical of journalists that think that
they can edit content without knowing diddley about the content.

Don't be surprised if this happens to your best efforts, too.  If anybody
knows an effective defense against this problem, please let me in on it.


On Sun, 17 Mar 2002 douggreene at earthlink.net wrote:

> But wasn't Peter Fishburn Brams' co-author?
> A very happy Doug
> douggreene at earthlink.net


> French Twist: A Fair Way to Pick Oscars?
> March 17, 2002
> Steven J. Brams, a professor of politics at New York
> University, thinks he knows who should choose the winners
> of the 74th Annual Academy Awards on March 24: the Marquis
> de Condorcet, an 18th-century social theorist who came up
> with an idea called approval voting before dying in prison
> during the French Revolution.
> "Approval voting is a system in which you can vote for as
> many candidates as you like, as long as there are more than
> two candidates on the ballot," said Professor Brams, who
> wrote a 1983 book on the theory with Paul Hager. "I would
> claim that with approval voting, you could have your cake
> and eat it, too."
> Based largely on social choice theory, which concerns
> itself with how best to translate a large number of
> individual preferences into the fairest and most
> representative preference for an entire society, and to a
> lesser degree on game theory, which involves mathematical
> and economic strategy models, approval voting is
> custom-made for the Oscars, Professor Brams insists.
> Just look at the 1976 best picture race, he said. The five
> nominees were "All the President's Men," "Bound for Glory,"
> "Network," "Taxi Driver" and "Rocky," the eventual winner.
> "I cannot believe that `Rocky' would have won a
> head-to-head contest with "Taxi Driver,' " he said, a
> little testily.

<big snip>

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