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To: gentoo-project@g.o
From: Alistair Bush <ali_bush@g.o>
Subject: Re: Gentoo Leadership Structure
Date: Tue, 20 May 2008 23:57:23 +1200
Jorge Manuel B. S. Vicetto wrote:
> 
> The problem with this concept is that the Council and the Trustees
> represent different teams and the plan is to have a greater division
> between them in the future. It can also promote tensions that could
> escalate into a "war" between them with one trying to dismantle the other.
> The current policies already state that the council can be "voted out",
> although there are no rules on how to do it, and the proposed bylaws,
> including their current revision, already allow for a vote of the
> foundation members to remove the existing trustees.
> If we have clear policies that either body fails to follow, I think
> Richard's proposal for the referendum is a better solution to enforce
> those policies.
> 

Well this policy is in practice within many countries around the world. 
And within a Constitutional monarchy I know of only one example of 
something like that ever happening.  It is called the Australian 
Constitutional Crisis.  It is also one of the reasons I added the 
minimum period rule,  so that in any situation one body could not remove 
another continuously.  If there is a situation where a "war" breaks out 
it will be the development community who decides which group is right. 
We might be a bunch of idiots, but I think we have the intelligence to 
not get into a cyclical situation where every month we alternate between 
having a council or foundation election.


On the whole I don't really have a problem with Richards proposal in 
general, but I disagree with somethings in particular.

Firstly I always get the impression that people think the Foundation is 
just a holding company for the assets of gentoo. I think it owns Gentoo 
and _everything_ that Gentoo does (or is) is of interest to, and the 
responsibility of, the Foundation.  I note that there have been ppl 
complaining about the "closed" decision making of the present Council, 
well the Foundation Charter states "Every aspect of Gentoo is and 
remains open. Gentoo does not benefit from hiding any of its development 
processes (whether it is source code or documentation, decisions or 
discussions, coordination or management).".  The Foundation has a vested 
interest in how the Council performs its function.  Why?  Because the 
council influences whether the foundation meets its Charter.  If the 
Council is closed, gentoo is closed and the foundation fails to meet one 
of its 4 pillars.

Secondly, I despise situations when groups get to decide there own fate. 
  If you have to submit a petition you really shouldn't be submitting it 
to the organisation/group your submitting it against.  Who says the 
council doesn't need to just ignore it?  What would you do if they did 
ignore it?  it's their responsibility to submit it too mailing lists and 
call a vote.  if anyone else does it, then it couldn't be considered 
official.

Thirdly, I believe my suggestion can be written more consistently with 
less room for interpretation, etc, etc.

When it comes down to it we really are discussing what will hopefully be 
the least used rules of the entire distro.

I will attempt to merge Richards idea's with my own.

1) The Foundation call's for Council elections, Council call's for 
Foundation elections.
2)  At any time during a Councils term the Council can ask the 
Foundation to call elections for Council, at which time the Foundation 
_must_ do so. (and vice versa for Foundation)
3) Foundation can dismiss Council and call elections. (majority or 
absolute vote?)
4) Council can dismiss "Foundation" (or more correctly all its members) 
and call elections. ( absolute vote only? )
5) A Council or Foundation can't be dismissed within the first 2 Months 
of being elected.
6) The Foundation automatically delegates Development responsibility to 
the Council.
7) The Council may appoint Positions and delegate responsibilities. [1]
8) The Council is the arm of Gentoo that defines the direction of Gentoo 
from a development perspective as long as it meets the goals of the 
Foundation ( Otherwise the Foundation will dismiss them,  or possibly 
overturn there decisions? )..
9) The Council must meet monthly ( with current attendance rules ). 
Rules surrounding extra meetings are at the Councils discretion.
10) Any developer may follow the following procedure to hold a 
referendum on any issue that will be binding on Gentoo (but not the 
Foundation):
	a) Create a petition containing a clear resolution with voting options 
(which must include an option to abstain and an option to decline the 
resolution).
	b) Collect gpg signatures from developers/staff.  The requisite number 
of signatures is xx% of the number devs who made commits in the last 30 
days.  Note that the count of devs making commits is used ONLY to 
determine the number of sigs needed - any devs/staff can provide sigs 
regardless of their role or level of activity as long as they haven't 
been retired/booted.
	c) Submit petition to Foundation.  The council will post the petition 
on -dev-announce (or -core if the petition so indicates) and allow two 
weeks for debate and two weeks for voting.


[1] This means that the Council could appoint a leader and delegate all 
responsibility to them, it could also be used to imply that the Council 
appoints the leaders of each Project by accepting automatically the vote 
of that projects members.  Therefore a leader of a project would have 
been delegated responsibility for the project from the Council.


Hopefully this will give ppl something to think about at least.

Alistair
-- 
gentoo-project@g.o mailing list


References:
Gentoo Leadership Structure
-- Richard Freeman
Re: Gentoo Leadership Structure
-- Alistair Bush
Re: Gentoo Leadership Structure
-- Jorge Manuel B. S. Vicetto
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