# Wikipedia error on Cumulative Voting?

The wikipedia page for cumulative voting describes is as a cardinal method in the introduction, before going on to describe ‘dot voting’ as a concrete example later on:

"Cumulative voting … is a multiple-winner cardinal voting method"
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cumulative_voting

However, the wikipedia page for cardinal voting specifically describes independent rating, as I would expect:

"Cardinal voting refers to any electoral system which allows the voter to give each candidate an independent rating or grade."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cardinal_voting

It seems to me that this is an error on the cumulative voting page. I would like to get feedback from people who know more about voting science than me (probably most of you!) before I suggest an edit.

Doug

I think it is the Ballot which is cardinal or not. There are three types of ballot: Cardinal, Ordinal and Choose one. I would say cumulative voting is cardinal.

If you say cumulative voting is a subtype of cardinal voting, then the wikipedia description of cardinal voting seems to be in error.

An example of cumulative voting would be “allocate 10 voting points between the options any way you like”. In this case voters cannot give independent ratings, since giving points to one option reduces the available points they could give to other options.

I had always thought of cumulative to be a distinct third category of voting in addition to cardinal (‘scoring’) and ordinal (‘ranking’). Until now I’d considered plurality/majority/vote-one to be an example of cumulative voting

I would say that cumulative voting is a fourth type. There was also a discussion here: https://electowiki.org/wiki/Talk:Ballot_types

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I am OK with this. There is definitely some logic to distinguishing them.

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Thanks for the input @Keith_Edmonds @psephomancy Referring back to my original post, do you then both agree that the wikipedia article for cumulative voting is in error, and that cumulative voting should not be described as a type of cardinal voting?

Secondly, about the categorization of cumulative and ‘vote-one’ voting. (Thanks for that link @psephomancy and also for the nice Euler diagram of voting methods you made.) I feel that ‘vote-one’, cumulative and quadratic voting belong to the a category which is fundamentally distinct from cardinal/scoring and ordinal/ranking. These methods seem to be defined by giving voters a finite set of voting ‘points’ which they can can spread between the options:

• vote-one: you have one point which you may give to one option
• cumulative: you have n points (2+) which you may distribute between the options
• quadratic: you have n points which you may distribute between the options; the vote weight = sqrt(points)

What do you think?

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That seems right to me. Vote-one is the degenerate case of every other type, though.

I will continue discussing the initial topic about whether the cumulative voting article or the cardinal voting article is in error on the wikipedia talk page of cumulative voting.

Is vote-one really a degenerate case of cardinal/score voting? I thought by definition, this requires all options to be independently rated. As such, I thought approval was the most degenerate case of cardinal…

I suppose that’s right