Washington Will Let Voters Register Via Facebook

App expected as soon as next week
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 18, 2012 12:14 PM CDT
Washington Will Let Voters Register Via Facebook
A Facebook logo is displayed on the screen of an iPad, Wednesday, May 16, 2012 in New York.   (AP Photo/James H. Collins)

In Washington, you'll soon be able to find out what your friends are eating for lunch and register to vote all in the same place. As soon as next week, the state becomes the first in the US to allow voters to register via Facebook, Ars Technica reports. (It was also the second state to offer any type of online registration, back in 2008; today, 13 states have followed the move.) Microsoft created the Facebook app, which accesses the MyVote system to allow users to register for the first time or update their registration.

"Your name and date of birth are pulled from [your] Facebook profile, then it operates exactly as it does if you’re not in Facebook," says the state's co-director of elections. "Our state database checks to see if you’re already registered." You'll also need an ID, and the system will check to make sure "that this is a real person who is registering," he says. The system will save the county anywhere from 50 cents to $2 per registration, and the state will save a quarter per registration. (More voter registration stories.)

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