Myths and facts about voting
Myth #1: The choice with the most votes is the most popular.
Fact: The most popular choice cannot be correctly identified if you only collect each person's first choice and none of the choices gets a majority of those first-choice votes.
Myth #2: Voting is only useful for identifying a single winning choice.
Fact: A voting method that can't reveal the full ranking—from most popular to least popular—often fails to correctly identify which choice is really the most popular.
Myth #3: The choice with fewest votes is least popular.
Fact: The least-popular choice cannot be correctly identified if you only collect each person's first choice.
Myth #4: Runoff voting gives fair results
Fact: The most popular choice can be eliminated in an earlier round of runoff voting.
Myth #5: It is impossible to correctly identify the second-most popular choice, the third-most popular choice, and so on.
Fact: If order-of- preference ballots are used, there is enough information to correctly identify the second-most popular choice, the third-most popular choice, and so on.
Myth #6: The American Idol singer with the fewest votes always deserves to be eliminated from the contest.
Fact: Vote-splitting contributed to the early elimination of Jennifer Hudson, Elliott Yamin, Chris Daughtry, and Melinda Doolittle.
Myth #7: Instant runoff voting (IRV) correctly identifies the most popular choice.
Fact: Instant runoff voting (IRV) does not consider all the preferences of all the voters.
Myth #8: The traditional way of voting has withstood the test of time.
Fact: The recent arrival of computers gives us the opportunity to abandon (primitive) single-mark ballots and calculate fair results—which also reveal the full ranking of choices from most popular to least popular.
Myth #9: If there is a second equivalent seat to be filled, the second-most popular candidate deserves to win it.
Fact: If there is a second equivalent seat to be filled, the second-most representative candidate—based on VoteFair representation ranking—deserves to win it.