Elections gets new look, website; Voters in the student election must use OrgSync services

After years of electing leaders via their myLane accounts, students might have to register for a different, more private network when the polls open April 28.

Members of Lane’s administration have been pushing students and faculty members to use the network services of the private technology firm OrgSync.

OrgSync connects students “to organizations, programs, and departments” in a private online community, according to the organization’s website.

In order to be eligible to vote, potential voters must be Lane students enrolled in at least one credit on the main campus. It’s unclear whether OrgSync has the capability to verify whether students only attend classes online or at a satellite campus.

The student government constitution and bylaws stipulate that only students who attend classes on the main campus are eligible to vote in the election, because only those students pay the student activity fee that funds the student government.

Elections on myLane have experienced problems in the past. During last year’s elections, the numbered order in which ballot measures appeared was different in the voters pamphlet and on the myLane ballot.

“From what I have been told (OrgSync) has a good system for this,” Ellis said. “It’s looking like it will be a lot easier than the way that we have done it with myLane before.”

The ASLCC bylaws require that elections use myLane. ASLCC President Paul Zito said elections will still use myLane as the primary avenue for the votes, with a link to the ballot, but will use OrgSync to tally them.

ASLCC adviser Barb Delansky, who is organizing OrgSync for the vote, said it will improve voter turnout because the system’s more user-friendly, but students will have to log in with their L-numbers and passwords.

If voters have to set up an OrgSync account before voting, Zito said it may impact turnout.

Ellis said the student government is using OrgSync because the system is more congruent with the voting process. Both the administrators and voters have had issues using myLane in the past, she said.

To register for OrgSync, students must enter their L-number and passwords, and cannot use a different username and password from their myLane password.

OrgSync was started in 2007 by a group of students at University of Texas at Austin. The private network is written on the same kind of open script that was vulnerable to Heartbleed, an exploit that compromised approximately 60 percent of the Internet in the last two years.

According to developers working for Google, most firms have fixed the security problems since they were first publicized in early April.

Historically, the student government general election sees a low voter turnout. Fewer than 1 percent of Lane students voted in last year’s ASLCC general election, but students still managed to elect a full government and pass four ballot measures before the polls closed.

“It’s a bummer more people don’t turn out,” Zito said. “But (voting is) the way it should be, regardless.”

(Reporter Taya Alami contributed to this report.)