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List Archive: gentoo-council
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To: gentoo-council@g.o
From: Richard Freeman <rich0@g.o>
Subject: Re: Voting by mail
Date: Fri, 26 Feb 2010 07:42:05 -0500
On 02/25/2010 09:42 PM, Denis Dupeyron wrote:
> In a few words here is the problem. Is it a good idea to allow council
> members to vote by email when they're not able to make it to the
> meeting?

How the council wants to run itself should really be up to each council 
- the devs elected them, and I'm not sure we really need a GLSA/etc to 
govern how it operates beyond the general charter.

Personally, I've found that board meetings tend to work best when 
they're just formalizations of decisions that have already been made. 
If an item needs discussion, then it should be discussed, and probably 
not voted unless there is a rush (since in theory everybody should think 
about it and maybe allow for general dev input).  If an item needs 
voting, then it should be voted, and not discussed (since discussion 
should have taken place on lists/etc).

Of course, in a crisis you just do what needs to be done, and chances 
are you're not in a scheduled meeting anyway.

If somebody wants to convince the council of something, they're best off 
writing up a concise argument and sending it to the list.  Some items 
are complex enough to require interactive discussion, but in that case 
time should be set aside for it, and there shouldn't necessarily be an 
expectation that a vote take place immediately afterwards.  If somebody 
wants to just read the irc logs and email in a vote later, I'm not sure 
that really is an abdication of responsibility.

With gentoo spanning so many timezones, and with the desire to have 
exceptional people as leaders, we do need to recognize that it isn't 
always possible for people to be in-person at meetings.  If we really 
want "the best" to lead gentoo, then we need to recognize that these 
sorts of people often have a lot of other things going on as well, and 
making a meeting at 10AM on a work day, or 3AM on a weekend, or whatever 
might not always be possible.  We really need to make the most of tools 
like email/forums/etc and when we are meeting in-person we should treat 
that time as being very precious.

Just some thoughts - every team needs to work out the rules they work 
best under.  I wouldn't expect every council to work in the same way as 
the current one, and if people leave and join the current council needs 
to take into account whether it needs to change.

Rich


References:
Voting by mail
-- Denis Dupeyron
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Updated Nov 13, 2011

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