For those that are confused, Sweden does not have electronic voting, and you can vote for anything, not just registered political parties. There's no list of parties where you are supposed to mark one, instead you get an envelope, and put in a ballot paper that contains the name of the party you are voting for. Normally you get a pre-printed one from the party you want to vote for, but you can also take a blank one and write whatever you want on it.
Any ballot with something written on it is a valid vote which has to be counted and becomes part of the official election result. Since a few years back they started publishing these results on the website of the election authority, you can see the 2006 results here: http://www.val.se/val/val2006/slutlig/R/rike/roster.html
The list of votes for registered parties that did not gain any seats are here: http://www.val.se/val/val2006/slutlig/R/rike/ovriga.html
And finally, the list of write-in votes for non-registered parties is here: http://www.val.se/val/val2006/slutlig_ovrigt/handskrivet/R/i...
So given this, it was just a matter of time before someone would use their vote to see if they could do a pen and paper scripting attack. :-)
> Sweden does not have electronic voting, and you can vote for anything [...]
That's not very connected. You could easily imagine a free form electronic system. And the German system on the other hand is (or used to be?) completely paper based: You got a ballot with the names of all the parties / candidates, and placed a tick next to the name you liked. Any writing made the ballot invalid.
I can also imagine a multitude of ways electronic voting can fail or be manipulated without anyone knowing.
Voter turnout was over 84%, and that number has been increasing over the last few elections. We do not have an accessibility problem. For the type of elections we have, the current system is a good fit. One person - one envelope. When the polling stations close the polling clerks take all the envelopes, open them, sort the ballots into valid and invalid piles, and then count the valid votes by hand. It takes a few hours, but we get a pretty accurate preliminary result on election night, and the process is completely open, anyone can watch the counting.
After the preliminary counting all the ballots are sent in to the regional election authority office where they do a second counting where they also add in mail-in votes from Swedes abroad and other people who couldn't be there on the voting day. The second counting is also completely open, anyone can come and watch.
Yes, it takes a few days to get the final result, but the confidence in the result is very high. Yes, there are occasional screwups, but it gets noticed, it gets reported, anyone can notice them, you don't need to a software engineer to have a chance at it.
If the general population can understand the inner workings of democracy, they are probably much more likely to embrace it.
(Though still, electronic voting and free form ballots are completely unconnected.)
By the way the Bundeswahlgesetz (Paragraph 39, Absatz 1) says: "Ungültig sind Stimmen, wenn der Stimmzettel [...] einen Zusatz oder Vorbehalt enthält."
So in general, putting extra stuff besides your tick, is not allowed.