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

Alphax (Wikipedia email) alphasigmax at gmail.com
Fri Dec 8 09:42:39 UTC 2006

Gerard Meijssen wrote:
> Alphax (Wikipedia email) schreef:
>> I actually see two problems with the current round of arbcom elections:
>> 1. We're not using a secret ballot, which makes voting too easily
>> influenced by peer pressure
>> 2. I don't believe that there are enough suitable candidates to fill the
>> vacant positions, and that the community will do a very poor job of
>> chosing the right people. Arbcom on en: is supposed to be made up of
>> senior, trusted, respected members of the community, but most of the
>> candidates could be described as anything but.
>> So, like several people, I shall continue to boycott the current round
>> of elections.
> Hoi,
>  From where I stand, the English language Wikipedia arbcom, is very much 
> an issue of the English Wikipedia community. However, the arguments that 
> apply for the Arbcom elections are very much the same for the Steward 
> elections. The voting is done in a similar way and from the way you 
> approach it, you cannot know the people who stand for office like the 
> people who know them from their native projects.

... and being "open", we're having exactly the same problems as with
Arbcom elections. People saying nasty things about candidates etc.

> Effeietsanders for instance has his roots very much in the Dutch 
> language projects. I have got to know him a great guy. He is senior in 
> the Dutch realm, he is trusted and he is respected. There is however no 
> chance for you to know him like I do.

Doesn't mean I can't voice my opinion though. Stewards are also rather
more global than arbitrators, and don't have as much influence. Also,
you might want to check how I've voted wrt. stewards.

> You can boycott the Steward collections because you do not believe
> people to have these qualities then again how do you know?


> You also have to measure people by a certain 
> yardstick. Never mind your sterling remark that got so many people 
> incensed because of the sensitivity towards women (was it a joke?),

That was a mistake, but all we can do about the past is learn from it.

> I still believe and trust that even people like yourself will rise to
> the occasion and prove to do better than expected and do good in a
> role as arbcom member or steward.

Again, stewards are very different to arbitrators. Arbitrators on en:
are directly appointed by Jimbo, and there is a quota to be filled -
it's not like we can say "oh, it doesn't matter that nobody got elected,
we've got enough to cover". We WILL have 5 new arbitrators whether we
like it or not; I don't know if you've experienced it on the projects
you're active on, but my experience on en: Wikipedia is that people vote
for their friends, and that stupid people tend to have lots of friends
who will vote for them, because the votes are visible to everyone.

> What do you achieve by applying this "I vote with my feet" logic? The 
> vote will still go ahead. You earn some more "malcontent" points. You 
> /will /be able to say, "I always said it would be no good" when the 
> arbcom does things that you disapprove off. This is a negative behaviour 
> that does get you nowhere. When you do not want to vote, do not vote. 
> Voting does not necessarily get you the results that you want, but that 
> is exactly what voting is meant to do.

... what good has it done people who opposed things they didn't agree
with all throughout history?

Alphax - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Alphax
Contributor to Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia
"We make the internet not suck" - Jimbo Wales
Public key: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Alphax/OpenPGP

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