17 Nov 2005 cinamod   » (Master)

Gnome Foundation Elections

I'm looking forward to voting in the upcoming elections. I've emailed maybe a little too much about it lately. I know that I'm being a pedant, but in a democracy, elections must be "above board" and beyond reproach. It's absolutely necessary to be a pedant, especially with the new foundation's power being concentrated in 4 fewer people's control. I'd like to thank David Neary, Vincent Untz and others for their hard work and for helping to clear up some issues that I and others had.

Currently, only 8 members' nominations have gone through to the foundation-announce list (as required), while 12 have gone to foundation-list (which is not mentioned in the election rules). At least one (Luis') seems to have been caught by a mailing-list admin bot.

The recent foundation referendum was a non-binding "advisory" referendum to reduce the number of board members from 11 to 7. Even though I disagree with the outcome and voted against it, I must and will abide by it. However, I don't think that enough mention was made that the board had voted to accept the referendum's outcome, considering that their decision to abide by it was apparently held in a private meeting before the vote. It is not completely illogical to think that a non-binding advisory vote will necessarily be honored or carry any real weight. See also: US Congress' countless non-binding resolutions to the President.

Given the above confusion and Tim Ney's recent departure from the Foundation, I didn't readily know how many board members there would be in the upcoming term. It appears that there will be 7, and thank Dave for clearing that up. I apologize for not investigating this further before emailing the list. I acted perhaps a bit too rashly to emails by Jeff Waugh and Dave. The results were finalized and mentioned in a few places, though because the "GNOME Foundation Membership & Elections Committee" and not "the board" said that there will be 7 seats instead of 11, I was confused as to the official-ness of the advisory referendum.

Finally, the recent referendum and upcoming election was/will be conducted by Vincent, a staunch supporter of the referendum and first-time board candidate. Vincent is a great guy, I congratulate him for running, and he will probably be getting my vote. He appears to be doing everything within his power to train others how to run the election before the polls close on December 9. I have 100% confidence in him and don't allege that he'll do (or has done) anything to effect the outcome of these votes, other than be the best candidate he can be :) But in an election, one must avoid even the spectre of impropriety. Our geek community doesn't tolerate Diebold making traditional voting machines, in large part because of their partisan donations/interests. We shouldn't hold ourselves to a lower standard just because Vincent is our friend and a top-notch guy.

I know that I'm being a pedant. But the question is, why aren't you? If you care enough to vote, care a little more to make sure that your vote really counts. Cheers and good luck to all the candidates. Let's have a great election!

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