[Foundation-l] Concerns over en.wikipedia.org ArbCom Election Process

Sean Whitton sean at silentflame.com
Wed Dec 6 12:30:32 UTC 2006

I would like to emphasise the issues with voting against people you
would normally support, as this has been an issue with me with the
current steward election. Alternatively, a secret ballot makes
everything infinitely more serious and this can cause problems with
honesty. You have people arguing about who can be trusted to handle
the information.

Personally, I think that what we have now works as long as the
community is strict over the issues that you have hilighted - it is a
virtual world, so threats can be somewhat toned-down.

Just my thoughts.

On 06/12/06, Stephanie Erin Daugherty <stephanie at sosdg.org> wrote:
> Having not participated in last years ArbCom elections, I was quite
> shocked to see, that with the important role the Arbitraton Committee
> has in safeguarding the ideals and policies of the English wikipedia,
> these elections are being held with an open ballot.
> I cannot have any confidence in such an election. Open ballots bring out
> the worst in politics - bullying, fear of retaliation, groupthink, and
> voting with the hope to gain political favor in the future. While an
> open ballot appears open on the surface, as history has demonstrated, it
> is anything but.
> There is a reason that most free elections use secret ballots. Only in
> secret can someone make their true opinion known, without fear of
> bullying, fear of retaliation, undue influence of others, or hurt
> feelings.
> Secret ballots also allow for good judgement to be exercised in cases
> where a moral dilemma would otherwise exist - how do you deal with
> voting against someone who you are close friends with, or who is in a
> position of power over you, be it actual or percieved? In an open
> ballot, this at the very least means either hurt feelings, or votes that
> do not reflect one's true beliefs as to right choice to make in an
> election.
> We have facilities for secret ballots and approval voting. Those
> facilities work well, as demonstrated in the last board elections.
> Why on-wiki voting was chosen in favor of this, I don't know, to me it
> defies logical sense.
> In conclusion, I condemn this election in the strongest possible terms,
> as being flawed, subject to tampering, and as being anything other than
> a free election. I would hope that I'm not the only person that it this
> way, but even if I am, I know that I cannot in good concience stand for
> such an unjust and flawed process.
> I would encourage anyone else that feels strongly about this to make
> their voice heard, and loudly, so that future elections do not follow
> the same flawed path, and so that we can have confidence in our
> elections process.
> --
> Stephanie Daugherty
> stephanie at sosdg.org
> User:Triona on en.wikipedia.org
> _______________________________________________
> foundation-l mailing list
> foundation-l at wikimedia.org
> http://mail.wikipedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l

—Sean Whitton	(Xyrael)	[sean at silentflame dot com]
	Knowledge is power, but only wisdom is liberty.

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