One Thing You Still Can't Do Online

These days, you can do pretty much anything online, except for one: submit your U.S. census forms. A new website,, aims to change that, partially by “sham[ing] the U.S. Census Office for not having a method of online submission.” The website asks the same questions as the 2010 U.S. Census, but allows users to submit their answers online and see real-time statistics (as of April 1, 2010). The website also includes a petition urging the U.S. Census Office “to make an online submission option a higher priority.”[%comments]


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  1. Lance S says:

    You think the census is messed up.

    Try dealing with the copyright office…hahaha.

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  2. David says:

    The first thing I noticed when I opened my census form was the lack of on-line option. Seems archaic.

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  3. Rich says:

    I asked this obvious question to myself yesterday…

    But hey, think about how many data entry jobs the census creates???

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  4. Terry says:

    Right, because with billions of dollars of federal aid on the line, no one would go through the too-often simple task of hacking a website.

    Marblecake, also The Game.

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  5. Cynthia says:

    I understand the desire for on-line submission, but really how hard is sticking it in the mail? If the Census Office were hacked, had a hole in security that was not realized or any other privacy breech, the entire project would be at risk.

    I love the Internet. It is helpful and wonderful and easy and well great. However, so far it is not secure–not at the government level, the corporate level, and certainly the personal level.

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  6. Tom from Wisconsin says:

    The census needs to be complete. You can’t get by with something that misses people. Thus, a follow-up canvass for addresses that don’t return the form. You could argue (as you appear to be here) that the on-line option would cut down the mailings needed, but you are still going to have to do the mailings and follow-up. The extra steps needed suggest to me the savings would not be that significant. And the added layer means one more chance to game the system as well.

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  7. Stephanie says:

    Not everyone has access to an online forum. The digital divide is very much alive in most of America. People typically want things online because they believe it is “easier.” Filling in some bubbles took about two minutes. Less time than it would take for me to turn on my machine, go to the website and complete the document.

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  8. CK says:

    I’m guessing it’s the same reason you can’t vote online in the US elections. It’s just not ‘secure’ enough in their minds.

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