The ancient Greeks used secret ballots for the purpose of ostracism, a procedure by which you could be voted out of Athens for 10 years.
It remains for us to see what use owners corporations will put secret ballots to when they are permitted under the new strata laws, beginning in NSW on 30 November 2016, but many in quarrelsome buildings would argue for the power to be used in exactly the same way. Banishing the persistent visitor car-space hog out of town for 10 years is a much better idea than issuing a by-law breach notice.
In modern times, the secret voting method has become the accepted way to elect governments to counter corruption and remain hidden from people seeking favours.
These historical vignettes tell us something about the serious matters that secrecy has addressed over the years. They also tell us something about the sad point at which our strata communities have arrived.
We have introduced secret voting not to fight crime and corruption but to opt out of direct talk on interpersonal matters and decisions about the way we share space and property.
Those responsible should be ostracised.