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Re: FESCo elections

On Sun, 2007-06-24 at 15:18 -0500, Josh Boyer wrote:
> On Sat, 2007-06-23 at 17:25 -0700, Karsten Wade wrote:

> Who said it was a democracy?

Elected meritocracy?  Whatever you want to call it, it's a situation
where a body is being elected, who has influence over a group of people
who are being casually disenfranchised.

> > Why have
> > a special pool of citizens?  
> Almost every election system I know of has some kind of qualifications
> for potential voters.

Usually blanket and minimal, such as, "Must be a citizen and of age."
Not, "Member of a special guild," be it merchants or software packagers.

> > And does the special pool have to be made
> > up only of the kind of people who are being elected?
> >From where I sit, to a degree, yes.  Or at least of a similar role.
> FESCo makes the _engineering_ decisions.  Those decisions effect the
> package maintainers, rel-eng, QA, infrastructure, docs, etc. groups
> directly.  If you aren't in one of those groups, it is a rare occasion
> that a FESCo decision has direct impact on you.  If you want to open it
> up to anyone with the CLA signed, fine.  I'm not directly against that.
> I don't see what benefit that has, but ok.

Thanks for including Docs.  That's the first time it was on anyone's
list in this thread.  I don't recall seeing L10n on anyone's list, but I
guarantee they are greatly affected by FESCo decisions.  In fact ... uh,
I can make a case that every project is under the affect of FESCo

Heading forward from here, your "rare case" is going to be flipped to
the opposite position.  Maybe not in all decisions, but in enough.

> Frankly, I think the FPB election is the one that should be more "open"
> if you will.  Those decisions will likely have far more impact on the
> broader Fedora universe.  Remember, FPB is "big idea, big change, big
> impact" type decisions.

+1 ... but I figured that was a given.  Have Fedora account, have
ability to vote for FPB.  But perhaps there is a "more open" you are
looking for?

> > Special pools of voters for special positions:
> > 
> > * Only lawyers can vote for Federal Judges.
> > * Only medicos are allowed to vote for Surgeon General.
> > * Only white males are allowed to vote for President. 
> > 
> > What if you are not in that special pool and want to run or vote?  Put
> > on some whiteface and fake a law degree?
> Do not attempt to compare the election process with some form of racism.
> It is not, and the comparison is so far off base that I'm fairly pissed
> you even made it.

I'm sorry that you took it as comparison to racism; it would have
deserved a modified Godwin's, if that were the case.

One hundred year ago, in the US, entire segments of the population were
disenfranchised.  The reasons why those groups were not allowed the vote
were numerous.  Yes, racism and sexism were chief amongst those reasons.
Also, tradition ("Only white males run for President").  Inertia ("We'll
never get a black/woman/Jew elected President").  The habit of the power
elite to do what it takes to keep in power.  Etc.

My point is that, many in this thread have casually disenfranchised
hundreds and hundreds[1] of active contributors.  Rather than the
disenfranchised explaining why they have a right to vote, I'd like us to
consider this discussion from the other angle.  Is there any good reason
*not* to open FESCo elections (members and voting) to all of Fedora?

This is predicated on the recent clarifications that show that it is
FESCo's role to do the tactical deeds to make the Board's strategic
vision come true.  FESCo is specifically the body overseeing most of
Fedora's sub-project activities, and while it may be a 'peer' with
FAMSCo and FDSCo, it is really FESCo's decisions and actions that
greatly affect the other groups, and not the other way around.

If we proceed with FESCo election, we'll be disenfranchising nearly
2/3rd of our contributors based on if you happened to remind someone in
this thread that your group should be included in the voters/candidates
pool.  Seems pretty senseless to me.

- Karsten

[1] Last I looked at cvsextras, it was ~438 members, while the total
cla_done was 1300+.  So, 'thousands' is an exa
   Karsten Wade, 108 Editor       ^     Fedora Documentation Project 
 Sr. Developer Relations Mgr.     |  fedoraproject.org/wiki/DocsProject
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