[Wikimedia-l] Voting system (was: Results of 2015 WMF Board elections)

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[Wikimedia-l] Voting system (was: Results of 2015 WMF Board elections)

Milos Rancic-2
Moving this discussion into a separate thread, to leave the main one
for best wishes and similar :)

Before I start talking about the voting system itself, I have to say
that, from my personal perspective, I wouldn't imagine better outcome:
a Polish steward (my favorite Wikimedian group :) ), a Croat founder
of Wikidata (whom I consider as a friend) and a very prominent English
Wikipedian, with significant record of working with smaller languages
(BTW, I didn't know that he's a candidate till I saw the results; I
didn't vote, as I still don't think I am able to make informed
decision; useful note: one year out of movement requires more than one
year to be able to fully participate again).

When I read the results for the first time, I thought that it's about
structural changes. However, it was not. Present Board members were
just punished as present board members (some people will always object
your work) with negative votes, as well as Sj was punished with lack
of positive votes because of his laziness :P

The problem is obviously the voting system. And it's one more reason
why standing committee should be created. With more time, they would
know why it's perfect for stewards and why it isn't for any kind of
democratic representatives (including English Wikipedia ArbCom; as far
as I remember, this is exactly the method how en.wp ArbCom is
elected).

Stewards have to be trusted all over the projects and 80% threshold
follows that idea. However, stewards are not reelected, they have to
show to that they are doing good job and there is the space for those
who are doing important, but not visible job. Bottom line is that
stewards themselves decide if somebody would stay a steward or not.
(If there were objections from the community.) And stewards are doing
that job perfectly.

It should be also noted that stewards are elected managers, not
democratic representatives, which Board members and en.wp ArbCom
members are.

This system is bad because of two main reasons: (1) it isn't suitable
for electing democratic representatives; and (2) it's very vulnerable
to abuse, which could easily create negative culture.

Applying this to the democratic elections consistently means one of
two things: we want to have conformists in the Board or we want to
change Board members every two years.

I hope the first is not our idea. The second could be, but two years
in office is too short period of time for a Board member to do
anything substantially. So, this method would be a valid one if the
term of a Board member would be, let's say, four years.

The output of the elections is not democratic, as well. It's obvious
that Maria got the most support and it's 5% more than the first one,
as well as Phoebe had more support than the second one.

While I think that opposing votes are important, they shouldn't be
*that* important. Successful candidate had to gather 3 supporting
votes for every opposing one. If the supporting and opposing votes
have the same weight, it would be more fair.

With the formula S-O, the results would be:
1) Dariusz: 2028-556=1472
2) Maria: 2184-775=1409
3) Phoebe: 1995-714=1281
4) James: 1857-578=1279
5) Denny: 1628-544=1084

And the results would be much more according to the expressed will of
the community: Dariusz is well respected steward and community has
given him a lot of support, and as he is a new candidate he didn't do
anything which would annoy a part of the community. Maria had
significant opposition, but also the biggest number of supporters,
which has to be acknowledged. Phoebe and James would have been very
close, while Denny wouldn't reach support threshold.

If one opposing vote has weight of three supporting votes, this could
easily change the strategy of the groups interested to see one of
their candidates as Board members. Instead of "vote for", we'd get
"vote against" attitude. That's not just abusive toward the system,
but also creates negative atmosphere, where candidates and supporting
groups could start looking into each other as enemies, not as fellow
Wikimedians.

So, while the current voting system has given refreshing results, it
would be bad to keep it as it's now. To be honest, I would avoid
negative votes at all, as I am sure that even more fair system would
be implemented, if it contains negative votes next time, we'll get
much more negative votes than this time, with negative consequences
for our culture.

On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 2:16 PM, Gregory Varnum <[hidden email]> wrote:

> I have a lot of personal opinions on the method, questions process, etc.
> Many of them will be shared in the committee's post mortem (others I will
> be discarding as I now process the last several weeks).
>
> Also, we are beginning to post some statistics that folks may find helpful:
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Foundation_elections_2015/Stats
>
> We will be posting more on the blog next week about what all goes into
> running the elections, and I am open to feedback on what additional
> information we can share that would be helpful to the community. Our group
> made an early commitment to transparency, and I hope that has come across
> in our posting of major meeting minutes, posting of these stats, open
> dialogue on Meta and email, a post mortem from the committee, and the
> upcoming blog post.
>
> Finally, I want to give a big thank you to my colleagues on the Elections
> Committee. I was, by the nature of my tasks, a bit more visible - but
> please know that everyone worked very hard, did a great job, and deserves
> equal gratitude. Thank you Adrian, Anders, Daniel, Katie, Mardetanha,
> Ruslan, Savh, and Trijnstel - as well as Risker, James, Alice, Philippe,
> Geoff, Stephen, Sylvia, Heather, Tim, and a few others I'm sure I'm
> forgetting.
>
> -greg (User:Varnent)
>
> On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 6:19 AM, Chris Keating <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
>
>> Congratulations to the new Board members - I am sure you will do a great
>> job. And commiserations to those who will be leaving the Board - thank you
>> for all your hard work over many years.
>>
>> Also it is good to see a much higher turnout in this year's elections than
>> in 2013 - well done to those involved :)
>>
>> On the subject of voting systems, though...
>>
>> On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 9:08 AM, Anders Wennersten <
>> [hidden email]>
>> wrote:
>>
>> >
>> > David Cuenca Tudela skrev den 2015-06-06 09:01:
>> >
>> >> However I must say that the results of this election are hilarious. The
>> >> person with the most support votes doesn't win because of oppose votes
>> :D
>> >>
>> >>  Why hilarious? We had a full consensus in the election Committee to go
>> > for S/N/O voting, it is a kind of standard procedure in the Wikimedia
>> world.
>> >
>>
>> Many people looked at voting systems before the Wikimedia movement existed
>> and virtually none of them settled on the system we ended up with. Perhaps
>> this should tell us something!
>>
>> To my mind the key problems with the present system are:
>> 1) Oppose votes have greater weight than support votes. In this case, Maria
>> would have needed 136 additional support votes to win, or 46 fewer oppose
>> votes. In effect an Oppose vote was worth 2.96 times as much as a support
>> vote for her. As a result, being non-opposed is much more important than
>> being supported. The penalty for doing anything controversial is
>> significant.
>>
>> 2) There is nothing in the process to produce any diversity in the result.
>> Say that there was a 2/3 to 1/3 split in the electorate on some important
>> issue. The right answer would surely be that you elect 2 people with one
>> view and 1 with the other. However, in this voting system you would likely
>> end up electing 3 people from the majority point of view. Because the
>> Wikimedia movement is much more complex than this it is difficult to
>> conclude that there was any particular issue like this that would have
>> affected the result, but still, the point applies. The voting system builds
>> in homogeneity not diversity.
>>
>> Regards,
>>
>> Chris
>> _______________________________________________
>> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
>> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
>> [hidden email]
>> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
>> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
>>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l, <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Voting system (was: Results of 2015 WMF Board elections)

Ricordisamoa
Negative votes exist for a reason.
Or, let's make voters choose between "support" and "support"?

Il 06/06/2015 19:15, Milos Rancic ha scritto:

> Moving this discussion into a separate thread, to leave the main one
> for best wishes and similar :)
>
> Before I start talking about the voting system itself, I have to say
> that, from my personal perspective, I wouldn't imagine better outcome:
> a Polish steward (my favorite Wikimedian group :) ), a Croat founder
> of Wikidata (whom I consider as a friend) and a very prominent English
> Wikipedian, with significant record of working with smaller languages
> (BTW, I didn't know that he's a candidate till I saw the results; I
> didn't vote, as I still don't think I am able to make informed
> decision; useful note: one year out of movement requires more than one
> year to be able to fully participate again).
>
> When I read the results for the first time, I thought that it's about
> structural changes. However, it was not. Present Board members were
> just punished as present board members (some people will always object
> your work) with negative votes, as well as Sj was punished with lack
> of positive votes because of his laziness :P
>
> The problem is obviously the voting system. And it's one more reason
> why standing committee should be created. With more time, they would
> know why it's perfect for stewards and why it isn't for any kind of
> democratic representatives (including English Wikipedia ArbCom; as far
> as I remember, this is exactly the method how en.wp ArbCom is
> elected).
>
> Stewards have to be trusted all over the projects and 80% threshold
> follows that idea. However, stewards are not reelected, they have to
> show to that they are doing good job and there is the space for those
> who are doing important, but not visible job. Bottom line is that
> stewards themselves decide if somebody would stay a steward or not.
> (If there were objections from the community.) And stewards are doing
> that job perfectly.
>
> It should be also noted that stewards are elected managers, not
> democratic representatives, which Board members and en.wp ArbCom
> members are.
>
> This system is bad because of two main reasons: (1) it isn't suitable
> for electing democratic representatives; and (2) it's very vulnerable
> to abuse, which could easily create negative culture.
>
> Applying this to the democratic elections consistently means one of
> two things: we want to have conformists in the Board or we want to
> change Board members every two years.
>
> I hope the first is not our idea. The second could be, but two years
> in office is too short period of time for a Board member to do
> anything substantially. So, this method would be a valid one if the
> term of a Board member would be, let's say, four years.
>
> The output of the elections is not democratic, as well. It's obvious
> that Maria got the most support and it's 5% more than the first one,
> as well as Phoebe had more support than the second one.
>
> While I think that opposing votes are important, they shouldn't be
> *that* important. Successful candidate had to gather 3 supporting
> votes for every opposing one. If the supporting and opposing votes
> have the same weight, it would be more fair.
>
> With the formula S-O, the results would be:
> 1) Dariusz: 2028-556=1472
> 2) Maria: 2184-775=1409
> 3) Phoebe: 1995-714=1281
> 4) James: 1857-578=1279
> 5) Denny: 1628-544=1084
>
> And the results would be much more according to the expressed will of
> the community: Dariusz is well respected steward and community has
> given him a lot of support, and as he is a new candidate he didn't do
> anything which would annoy a part of the community. Maria had
> significant opposition, but also the biggest number of supporters,
> which has to be acknowledged. Phoebe and James would have been very
> close, while Denny wouldn't reach support threshold.
>
> If one opposing vote has weight of three supporting votes, this could
> easily change the strategy of the groups interested to see one of
> their candidates as Board members. Instead of "vote for", we'd get
> "vote against" attitude. That's not just abusive toward the system,
> but also creates negative atmosphere, where candidates and supporting
> groups could start looking into each other as enemies, not as fellow
> Wikimedians.
>
> So, while the current voting system has given refreshing results, it
> would be bad to keep it as it's now. To be honest, I would avoid
> negative votes at all, as I am sure that even more fair system would
> be implemented, if it contains negative votes next time, we'll get
> much more negative votes than this time, with negative consequences
> for our culture.
>
> On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 2:16 PM, Gregory Varnum <[hidden email]> wrote:
>> I have a lot of personal opinions on the method, questions process, etc.
>> Many of them will be shared in the committee's post mortem (others I will
>> be discarding as I now process the last several weeks).
>>
>> Also, we are beginning to post some statistics that folks may find helpful:
>> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Foundation_elections_2015/Stats
>>
>> We will be posting more on the blog next week about what all goes into
>> running the elections, and I am open to feedback on what additional
>> information we can share that would be helpful to the community. Our group
>> made an early commitment to transparency, and I hope that has come across
>> in our posting of major meeting minutes, posting of these stats, open
>> dialogue on Meta and email, a post mortem from the committee, and the
>> upcoming blog post.
>>
>> Finally, I want to give a big thank you to my colleagues on the Elections
>> Committee. I was, by the nature of my tasks, a bit more visible - but
>> please know that everyone worked very hard, did a great job, and deserves
>> equal gratitude. Thank you Adrian, Anders, Daniel, Katie, Mardetanha,
>> Ruslan, Savh, and Trijnstel - as well as Risker, James, Alice, Philippe,
>> Geoff, Stephen, Sylvia, Heather, Tim, and a few others I'm sure I'm
>> forgetting.
>>
>> -greg (User:Varnent)
>>
>> On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 6:19 AM, Chris Keating <[hidden email]>
>> wrote:
>>
>>> Congratulations to the new Board members - I am sure you will do a great
>>> job. And commiserations to those who will be leaving the Board - thank you
>>> for all your hard work over many years.
>>>
>>> Also it is good to see a much higher turnout in this year's elections than
>>> in 2013 - well done to those involved :)
>>>
>>> On the subject of voting systems, though...
>>>
>>> On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 9:08 AM, Anders Wennersten <
>>> [hidden email]>
>>> wrote:
>>>
>>>> David Cuenca Tudela skrev den 2015-06-06 09:01:
>>>>
>>>>> However I must say that the results of this election are hilarious. The
>>>>> person with the most support votes doesn't win because of oppose votes
>>> :D
>>>>>   Why hilarious? We had a full consensus in the election Committee to go
>>>> for S/N/O voting, it is a kind of standard procedure in the Wikimedia
>>> world.
>>> Many people looked at voting systems before the Wikimedia movement existed
>>> and virtually none of them settled on the system we ended up with. Perhaps
>>> this should tell us something!
>>>
>>> To my mind the key problems with the present system are:
>>> 1) Oppose votes have greater weight than support votes. In this case, Maria
>>> would have needed 136 additional support votes to win, or 46 fewer oppose
>>> votes. In effect an Oppose vote was worth 2.96 times as much as a support
>>> vote for her. As a result, being non-opposed is much more important than
>>> being supported. The penalty for doing anything controversial is
>>> significant.
>>>
>>> 2) There is nothing in the process to produce any diversity in the result.
>>> Say that there was a 2/3 to 1/3 split in the electorate on some important
>>> issue. The right answer would surely be that you elect 2 people with one
>>> view and 1 with the other. However, in this voting system you would likely
>>> end up electing 3 people from the majority point of view. Because the
>>> Wikimedia movement is much more complex than this it is difficult to
>>> conclude that there was any particular issue like this that would have
>>> affected the result, but still, the point applies. The voting system builds
>>> in homogeneity not diversity.
>>>
>>> Regards,
>>>
>>> Chris
>>> _______________________________________________
>>> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
>>> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
>>> [hidden email]
>>> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
>>> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
>>>
>> _______________________________________________
>> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
>> [hidden email]
>> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l, <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l, <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>


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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Voting system (was: Results of 2015 WMF Board elections)

MF-Warburg-2
In reply to this post by Milos Rancic-2
I still think it was a big mistake (of the electcom? I don't remember, but
/someone/ pushed it through without discussions) in the 2013 election to
abolish the Schulze method.
Am 06.06.2015 19:16 schrieb "Milos Rancic" <[hidden email]>:

> Moving this discussion into a separate thread, to leave the main one
> for best wishes and similar :)
>
> Before I start talking about the voting system itself, I have to say
> that, from my personal perspective, I wouldn't imagine better outcome:
> a Polish steward (my favorite Wikimedian group :) ), a Croat founder
> of Wikidata (whom I consider as a friend) and a very prominent English
> Wikipedian, with significant record of working with smaller languages
> (BTW, I didn't know that he's a candidate till I saw the results; I
> didn't vote, as I still don't think I am able to make informed
> decision; useful note: one year out of movement requires more than one
> year to be able to fully participate again).
>
> When I read the results for the first time, I thought that it's about
> structural changes. However, it was not. Present Board members were
> just punished as present board members (some people will always object
> your work) with negative votes, as well as Sj was punished with lack
> of positive votes because of his laziness :P
>
> The problem is obviously the voting system. And it's one more reason
> why standing committee should be created. With more time, they would
> know why it's perfect for stewards and why it isn't for any kind of
> democratic representatives (including English Wikipedia ArbCom; as far
> as I remember, this is exactly the method how en.wp ArbCom is
> elected).
>
> Stewards have to be trusted all over the projects and 80% threshold
> follows that idea. However, stewards are not reelected, they have to
> show to that they are doing good job and there is the space for those
> who are doing important, but not visible job. Bottom line is that
> stewards themselves decide if somebody would stay a steward or not.
> (If there were objections from the community.) And stewards are doing
> that job perfectly.
>
> It should be also noted that stewards are elected managers, not
> democratic representatives, which Board members and en.wp ArbCom
> members are.
>
> This system is bad because of two main reasons: (1) it isn't suitable
> for electing democratic representatives; and (2) it's very vulnerable
> to abuse, which could easily create negative culture.
>
> Applying this to the democratic elections consistently means one of
> two things: we want to have conformists in the Board or we want to
> change Board members every two years.
>
> I hope the first is not our idea. The second could be, but two years
> in office is too short period of time for a Board member to do
> anything substantially. So, this method would be a valid one if the
> term of a Board member would be, let's say, four years.
>
> The output of the elections is not democratic, as well. It's obvious
> that Maria got the most support and it's 5% more than the first one,
> as well as Phoebe had more support than the second one.
>
> While I think that opposing votes are important, they shouldn't be
> *that* important. Successful candidate had to gather 3 supporting
> votes for every opposing one. If the supporting and opposing votes
> have the same weight, it would be more fair.
>
> With the formula S-O, the results would be:
> 1) Dariusz: 2028-556=1472
> 2) Maria: 2184-775=1409
> 3) Phoebe: 1995-714=1281
> 4) James: 1857-578=1279
> 5) Denny: 1628-544=1084
>
> And the results would be much more according to the expressed will of
> the community: Dariusz is well respected steward and community has
> given him a lot of support, and as he is a new candidate he didn't do
> anything which would annoy a part of the community. Maria had
> significant opposition, but also the biggest number of supporters,
> which has to be acknowledged. Phoebe and James would have been very
> close, while Denny wouldn't reach support threshold.
>
> If one opposing vote has weight of three supporting votes, this could
> easily change the strategy of the groups interested to see one of
> their candidates as Board members. Instead of "vote for", we'd get
> "vote against" attitude. That's not just abusive toward the system,
> but also creates negative atmosphere, where candidates and supporting
> groups could start looking into each other as enemies, not as fellow
> Wikimedians.
>
> So, while the current voting system has given refreshing results, it
> would be bad to keep it as it's now. To be honest, I would avoid
> negative votes at all, as I am sure that even more fair system would
> be implemented, if it contains negative votes next time, we'll get
> much more negative votes than this time, with negative consequences
> for our culture.
>
> On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 2:16 PM, Gregory Varnum <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
> > I have a lot of personal opinions on the method, questions process, etc.
> > Many of them will be shared in the committee's post mortem (others I will
> > be discarding as I now process the last several weeks).
> >
> > Also, we are beginning to post some statistics that folks may find
> helpful:
> >
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Foundation_elections_2015/Stats
> >
> > We will be posting more on the blog next week about what all goes into
> > running the elections, and I am open to feedback on what additional
> > information we can share that would be helpful to the community. Our
> group
> > made an early commitment to transparency, and I hope that has come across
> > in our posting of major meeting minutes, posting of these stats, open
> > dialogue on Meta and email, a post mortem from the committee, and the
> > upcoming blog post.
> >
> > Finally, I want to give a big thank you to my colleagues on the Elections
> > Committee. I was, by the nature of my tasks, a bit more visible - but
> > please know that everyone worked very hard, did a great job, and deserves
> > equal gratitude. Thank you Adrian, Anders, Daniel, Katie, Mardetanha,
> > Ruslan, Savh, and Trijnstel - as well as Risker, James, Alice, Philippe,
> > Geoff, Stephen, Sylvia, Heather, Tim, and a few others I'm sure I'm
> > forgetting.
> >
> > -greg (User:Varnent)
> >
> > On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 6:19 AM, Chris Keating <
> [hidden email]>
> > wrote:
> >
> >> Congratulations to the new Board members - I am sure you will do a great
> >> job. And commiserations to those who will be leaving the Board - thank
> you
> >> for all your hard work over many years.
> >>
> >> Also it is good to see a much higher turnout in this year's elections
> than
> >> in 2013 - well done to those involved :)
> >>
> >> On the subject of voting systems, though...
> >>
> >> On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 9:08 AM, Anders Wennersten <
> >> [hidden email]>
> >> wrote:
> >>
> >> >
> >> > David Cuenca Tudela skrev den 2015-06-06 09:01:
> >> >
> >> >> However I must say that the results of this election are hilarious.
> The
> >> >> person with the most support votes doesn't win because of oppose
> votes
> >> :D
> >> >>
> >> >>  Why hilarious? We had a full consensus in the election Committee to
> go
> >> > for S/N/O voting, it is a kind of standard procedure in the Wikimedia
> >> world.
> >> >
> >>
> >> Many people looked at voting systems before the Wikimedia movement
> existed
> >> and virtually none of them settled on the system we ended up with.
> Perhaps
> >> this should tell us something!
> >>
> >> To my mind the key problems with the present system are:
> >> 1) Oppose votes have greater weight than support votes. In this case,
> Maria
> >> would have needed 136 additional support votes to win, or 46 fewer
> oppose
> >> votes. In effect an Oppose vote was worth 2.96 times as much as a
> support
> >> vote for her. As a result, being non-opposed is much more important than
> >> being supported. The penalty for doing anything controversial is
> >> significant.
> >>
> >> 2) There is nothing in the process to produce any diversity in the
> result.
> >> Say that there was a 2/3 to 1/3 split in the electorate on some
> important
> >> issue. The right answer would surely be that you elect 2 people with one
> >> view and 1 with the other. However, in this voting system you would
> likely
> >> end up electing 3 people from the majority point of view. Because the
> >> Wikimedia movement is much more complex than this it is difficult to
> >> conclude that there was any particular issue like this that would have
> >> affected the result, but still, the point applies. The voting system
> builds
> >> in homogeneity not diversity.
> >>
> >> Regards,
> >>
> >> Chris
> >> _______________________________________________
> >> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> >> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> >> [hidden email]
> >> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> >> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
> >>
> > _______________________________________________
> > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > [hidden email]
> > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
>
> _______________________________________________
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> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Voting system (was: Results of 2015 WMF Board elections)

Anders Wennersten-2
In reply to this post by Milos Rancic-2
The result could also be interpreted as a thundering success for the
voting method being used.

We have now the last year and two seen major improvement in
professionalism in  WMF (thanks Lila) and the chapters and their boards
(thanks local ECs and boards, FDC members, Katy and Winnifred). But the
professionalism of the Board has not really improved correspondingly,
and is in my view the weakest link in the movement just now. And the key
is here of course the recruitment to the Board.

And while I have the highest respect for the members now leaving, and
see them worthy of praise, I personally think we anyway need stronger
candidates more experienced in running this type of business. And I
actually see the new ones having stronger background to enabale the
necessary improvement in professionalism. This by the way include a more
more professional election process, including a (standing) Election
Committe (that exists well before the five days that was given before
having to get into operational mode that was the case this time ...).

And is it not perfect that the used algorithm enables a balancing of the
benefit for the existing Boardmembers of being well known with a
disappointment they do not live up to the high(er) exceptions (or need
of changed profiles in Board)?

Anders



Milos Rancic skrev den 2015-06-06 19:15:

> Moving this discussion into a separate thread, to leave the main one
> for best wishes and similar :)
>
> Before I start talking about the voting system itself, I have to say
> that, from my personal perspective, I wouldn't imagine better outcome:
> a Polish steward (my favorite Wikimedian group :) ), a Croat founder
> of Wikidata (whom I consider as a friend) and a very prominent English
> Wikipedian, with significant record of working with smaller languages
> (BTW, I didn't know that he's a candidate till I saw the results; I
> didn't vote, as I still don't think I am able to make informed
> decision; useful note: one year out of movement requires more than one
> year to be able to fully participate again).
>
> When I read the results for the first time, I thought that it's about
> structural changes. However, it was not. Present Board members were
> just punished as present board members (some people will always object
> your work) with negative votes, as well as Sj was punished with lack
> of positive votes because of his laziness :P
>
> The problem is obviously the voting system. And it's one more reason
> why standing committee should be created. With more time, they would
> know why it's perfect for stewards and why it isn't for any kind of
> democratic representatives (including English Wikipedia ArbCom; as far
> as I remember, this is exactly the method how en.wp ArbCom is
> elected).
>
> Stewards have to be trusted all over the projects and 80% threshold
> follows that idea. However, stewards are not reelected, they have to
> show to that they are doing good job and there is the space for those
> who are doing important, but not visible job. Bottom line is that
> stewards themselves decide if somebody would stay a steward or not.
> (If there were objections from the community.) And stewards are doing
> that job perfectly.
>
> It should be also noted that stewards are elected managers, not
> democratic representatives, which Board members and en.wp ArbCom
> members are.
>
> This system is bad because of two main reasons: (1) it isn't suitable
> for electing democratic representatives; and (2) it's very vulnerable
> to abuse, which could easily create negative culture.
>
> Applying this to the democratic elections consistently means one of
> two things: we want to have conformists in the Board or we want to
> change Board members every two years.
>
> I hope the first is not our idea. The second could be, but two years
> in office is too short period of time for a Board member to do
> anything substantially. So, this method would be a valid one if the
> term of a Board member would be, let's say, four years.
>
> The output of the elections is not democratic, as well. It's obvious
> that Maria got the most support and it's 5% more than the first one,
> as well as Phoebe had more support than the second one.
>
> While I think that opposing votes are important, they shouldn't be
> *that* important. Successful candidate had to gather 3 supporting
> votes for every opposing one. If the supporting and opposing votes
> have the same weight, it would be more fair.
>
> With the formula S-O, the results would be:
> 1) Dariusz: 2028-556=1472
> 2) Maria: 2184-775=1409
> 3) Phoebe: 1995-714=1281
> 4) James: 1857-578=1279
> 5) Denny: 1628-544=1084
>
> And the results would be much more according to the expressed will of
> the community: Dariusz is well respected steward and community has
> given him a lot of support, and as he is a new candidate he didn't do
> anything which would annoy a part of the community. Maria had
> significant opposition, but also the biggest number of supporters,
> which has to be acknowledged. Phoebe and James would have been very
> close, while Denny wouldn't reach support threshold.
>
> If one opposing vote has weight of three supporting votes, this could
> easily change the strategy of the groups interested to see one of
> their candidates as Board members. Instead of "vote for", we'd get
> "vote against" attitude. That's not just abusive toward the system,
> but also creates negative atmosphere, where candidates and supporting
> groups could start looking into each other as enemies, not as fellow
> Wikimedians.
>
> So, while the current voting system has given refreshing results, it
> would be bad to keep it as it's now. To be honest, I would avoid
> negative votes at all, as I am sure that even more fair system would
> be implemented, if it contains negative votes next time, we'll get
> much more negative votes than this time, with negative consequences
> for our culture.
>
> On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 2:16 PM, Gregory Varnum <[hidden email]> wrote:
>> I have a lot of personal opinions on the method, questions process, etc.
>> Many of them will be shared in the committee's post mortem (others I will
>> be discarding as I now process the last several weeks).
>>
>> Also, we are beginning to post some statistics that folks may find helpful:
>> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Foundation_elections_2015/Stats
>>
>> We will be posting more on the blog next week about what all goes into
>> running the elections, and I am open to feedback on what additional
>> information we can share that would be helpful to the community. Our group
>> made an early commitment to transparency, and I hope that has come across
>> in our posting of major meeting minutes, posting of these stats, open
>> dialogue on Meta and email, a post mortem from the committee, and the
>> upcoming blog post.
>>
>> Finally, I want to give a big thank you to my colleagues on the Elections
>> Committee. I was, by the nature of my tasks, a bit more visible - but
>> please know that everyone worked very hard, did a great job, and deserves
>> equal gratitude. Thank you Adrian, Anders, Daniel, Katie, Mardetanha,
>> Ruslan, Savh, and Trijnstel - as well as Risker, James, Alice, Philippe,
>> Geoff, Stephen, Sylvia, Heather, Tim, and a few others I'm sure I'm
>> forgetting.
>>
>> -greg (User:Varnent)
>>
>> On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 6:19 AM, Chris Keating <[hidden email]>
>> wrote:
>>
>>> Congratulations to the new Board members - I am sure you will do a great
>>> job. And commiserations to those who will be leaving the Board - thank you
>>> for all your hard work over many years.
>>>
>>> Also it is good to see a much higher turnout in this year's elections than
>>> in 2013 - well done to those involved :)
>>>
>>> On the subject of voting systems, though...
>>>
>>> On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 9:08 AM, Anders Wennersten <
>>> [hidden email]>
>>> wrote:
>>>
>>>> David Cuenca Tudela skrev den 2015-06-06 09:01:
>>>>
>>>>> However I must say that the results of this election are hilarious. The
>>>>> person with the most support votes doesn't win because of oppose votes
>>> :D
>>>>>   Why hilarious? We had a full consensus in the election Committee to go
>>>> for S/N/O voting, it is a kind of standard procedure in the Wikimedia
>>> world.
>>> Many people looked at voting systems before the Wikimedia movement existed
>>> and virtually none of them settled on the system we ended up with. Perhaps
>>> this should tell us something!
>>>
>>> To my mind the key problems with the present system are:
>>> 1) Oppose votes have greater weight than support votes. In this case, Maria
>>> would have needed 136 additional support votes to win, or 46 fewer oppose
>>> votes. In effect an Oppose vote was worth 2.96 times as much as a support
>>> vote for her. As a result, being non-opposed is much more important than
>>> being supported. The penalty for doing anything controversial is
>>> significant.
>>>
>>> 2) There is nothing in the process to produce any diversity in the result.
>>> Say that there was a 2/3 to 1/3 split in the electorate on some important
>>> issue. The right answer would surely be that you elect 2 people with one
>>> view and 1 with the other. However, in this voting system you would likely
>>> end up electing 3 people from the majority point of view. Because the
>>> Wikimedia movement is much more complex than this it is difficult to
>>> conclude that there was any particular issue like this that would have
>>> affected the result, but still, the point applies. The voting system builds
>>> in homogeneity not diversity.
>>>
>>> Regards,
>>>
>>> Chris
>>> _______________________________________________
>>> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
>>> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
>>> [hidden email]
>>> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
>>> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
>>>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Voting system (was: Results of 2015 WMF Board elections)

Risker
In reply to this post by MF-Warburg-2
The Schulze method that was being used is the one that is specifically
intended  to give only one winner; probably most people don't know that
Schulze also created a separate system that was intended to give multiple
winners.  It is a very confusing system and many people unintentionally
gave support to candidates they did not believe should have a chance.

One of the things that really becomes obvious using the S/N/O system is the
number of *non-votes* or neutral votes:  almost all of the candidates had
more neutral votes than support and oppose votes combined.  The effect of
not requiring voters to decide how to classify each candidate (in Schulze,
to rank the candidate; in S/N/O, to support or oppose) has radically
different effects in the two systems.  In S/N/O, the neutral votes have no
effect at all on the outcome.  In the Schulze system, not ranking a
candidate is the equivalent of an oppose vote; every candidate who is
ranked (even if they are ranked at a level well below the number of
candidates) is ranked higher than a candidate who is not ranked at all.
This is counter-intuitive and gives no effective way for people to
differentiate between candidates that they really really do not think
should be on the board and candidates about whom they have not formulated
an opinion, or even candidates about whom they are indifferent.  It is a
serious weakness in the Schulze system.  Nonetheless, the S/N/O system has
significant weaknesses as well, as others have pointed out.

There are other systems that allow only as many supports as there are seats
open, which might be worth considering. There are systems that only allow
support votes and no opposition.  There are not very many systems, though,
that are specifically designed to give multiple winners when one of the
conditions is that they *not* be running on a shared ticket.

We did not have enough time in 2013 (nor, to be honest, the interest
amongst Election Committee members) to do a thorough review of
multiple-winner voting systems. That year, we had to develop all of the
processes for electing FDC members and FDC ombuds, which was a lot of
work.  This year, the committee barely had enough time to do the tasks that
were absolutely required just to make the election happen, and in order to
incorporate the specific instructions of the board with respect to
outreach, seeking of diverse candidates, and increasing voter participation
(all of which proved very worthwhile), they didn't have time to fine-tune a
lot of the processes that were already developed.  I would have loved to
see changes in the way that questions are handled, and a rethinking of the
voting methodology, for example.  But there simply was not time to come up
with a well-considered *better* way.

So...yes, I agree with Milos and many others that a Standing Election
Committee is needed to re-examine the way that Board candidates are
elected, and to re-examine the entire framework on which the elections are
based - indeed, I recommended it after the 2013 election.

I find it interesting that nobody seems all that worried about the FDC
election (where 5 of 11 candidates got seats) or the FDC Ombud election
(where both candidates came forward in the last 24 hours before nominations
closed).  These two elections suggest some pretty big underlying problems
as well.  Nobody seems all that upset that fewer than 10% of all the
candidates for the 2015 elections were women - one of the lowest
percentages ever - and that not a single woman was elected to any role for
the first time in any election where more than one candidate was being
elected.  On the whole, despite having a fair number of candidates outside
of the US and areas represented by large national chapters, not a single
non-white, non-male candidate, not a single Asian, African or Latin
American candidate was elected.  We're pretty good at talking about
diversity, but very poor at implementing it.

Risker/Anne

On 6 June 2015 at 13:55, MF-Warburg <[hidden email]> wrote:

> I still think it was a big mistake (of the electcom? I don't remember, but
> /someone/ pushed it through without discussions) in the 2013 election to
> abolish the Schulze method.
> Am 06.06.2015 19:16 schrieb "Milos Rancic" <[hidden email]>:
>
> > Moving this discussion into a separate thread, to leave the main one
> > for best wishes and similar :)
> >
> > Before I start talking about the voting system itself, I have to say
> > that, from my personal perspective, I wouldn't imagine better outcome:
> > a Polish steward (my favorite Wikimedian group :) ), a Croat founder
> > of Wikidata (whom I consider as a friend) and a very prominent English
> > Wikipedian, with significant record of working with smaller languages
> > (BTW, I didn't know that he's a candidate till I saw the results; I
> > didn't vote, as I still don't think I am able to make informed
> > decision; useful note: one year out of movement requires more than one
> > year to be able to fully participate again).
> >
> > When I read the results for the first time, I thought that it's about
> > structural changes. However, it was not. Present Board members were
> > just punished as present board members (some people will always object
> > your work) with negative votes, as well as Sj was punished with lack
> > of positive votes because of his laziness :P
> >
> > The problem is obviously the voting system. And it's one more reason
> > why standing committee should be created. With more time, they would
> > know why it's perfect for stewards and why it isn't for any kind of
> > democratic representatives (including English Wikipedia ArbCom; as far
> > as I remember, this is exactly the method how en.wp ArbCom is
> > elected).
> >
> > Stewards have to be trusted all over the projects and 80% threshold
> > follows that idea. However, stewards are not reelected, they have to
> > show to that they are doing good job and there is the space for those
> > who are doing important, but not visible job. Bottom line is that
> > stewards themselves decide if somebody would stay a steward or not.
> > (If there were objections from the community.) And stewards are doing
> > that job perfectly.
> >
> > It should be also noted that stewards are elected managers, not
> > democratic representatives, which Board members and en.wp ArbCom
> > members are.
> >
> > This system is bad because of two main reasons: (1) it isn't suitable
> > for electing democratic representatives; and (2) it's very vulnerable
> > to abuse, which could easily create negative culture.
> >
> > Applying this to the democratic elections consistently means one of
> > two things: we want to have conformists in the Board or we want to
> > change Board members every two years.
> >
> > I hope the first is not our idea. The second could be, but two years
> > in office is too short period of time for a Board member to do
> > anything substantially. So, this method would be a valid one if the
> > term of a Board member would be, let's say, four years.
> >
> > The output of the elections is not democratic, as well. It's obvious
> > that Maria got the most support and it's 5% more than the first one,
> > as well as Phoebe had more support than the second one.
> >
> > While I think that opposing votes are important, they shouldn't be
> > *that* important. Successful candidate had to gather 3 supporting
> > votes for every opposing one. If the supporting and opposing votes
> > have the same weight, it would be more fair.
> >
> > With the formula S-O, the results would be:
> > 1) Dariusz: 2028-556=1472
> > 2) Maria: 2184-775=1409
> > 3) Phoebe: 1995-714=1281
> > 4) James: 1857-578=1279
> > 5) Denny: 1628-544=1084
> >
> > And the results would be much more according to the expressed will of
> > the community: Dariusz is well respected steward and community has
> > given him a lot of support, and as he is a new candidate he didn't do
> > anything which would annoy a part of the community. Maria had
> > significant opposition, but also the biggest number of supporters,
> > which has to be acknowledged. Phoebe and James would have been very
> > close, while Denny wouldn't reach support threshold.
> >
> > If one opposing vote has weight of three supporting votes, this could
> > easily change the strategy of the groups interested to see one of
> > their candidates as Board members. Instead of "vote for", we'd get
> > "vote against" attitude. That's not just abusive toward the system,
> > but also creates negative atmosphere, where candidates and supporting
> > groups could start looking into each other as enemies, not as fellow
> > Wikimedians.
> >
> > So, while the current voting system has given refreshing results, it
> > would be bad to keep it as it's now. To be honest, I would avoid
> > negative votes at all, as I am sure that even more fair system would
> > be implemented, if it contains negative votes next time, we'll get
> > much more negative votes than this time, with negative consequences
> > for our culture.
> >
> > On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 2:16 PM, Gregory Varnum <[hidden email]
> >
> > wrote:
> > > I have a lot of personal opinions on the method, questions process,
> etc.
> > > Many of them will be shared in the committee's post mortem (others I
> will
> > > be discarding as I now process the last several weeks).
> > >
> > > Also, we are beginning to post some statistics that folks may find
> > helpful:
> > >
> >
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Foundation_elections_2015/Stats
> > >
> > > We will be posting more on the blog next week about what all goes into
> > > running the elections, and I am open to feedback on what additional
> > > information we can share that would be helpful to the community. Our
> > group
> > > made an early commitment to transparency, and I hope that has come
> across
> > > in our posting of major meeting minutes, posting of these stats, open
> > > dialogue on Meta and email, a post mortem from the committee, and the
> > > upcoming blog post.
> > >
> > > Finally, I want to give a big thank you to my colleagues on the
> Elections
> > > Committee. I was, by the nature of my tasks, a bit more visible - but
> > > please know that everyone worked very hard, did a great job, and
> deserves
> > > equal gratitude. Thank you Adrian, Anders, Daniel, Katie, Mardetanha,
> > > Ruslan, Savh, and Trijnstel - as well as Risker, James, Alice,
> Philippe,
> > > Geoff, Stephen, Sylvia, Heather, Tim, and a few others I'm sure I'm
> > > forgetting.
> > >
> > > -greg (User:Varnent)
> > >
> > > On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 6:19 AM, Chris Keating <
> > [hidden email]>
> > > wrote:
> > >
> > >> Congratulations to the new Board members - I am sure you will do a
> great
> > >> job. And commiserations to those who will be leaving the Board - thank
> > you
> > >> for all your hard work over many years.
> > >>
> > >> Also it is good to see a much higher turnout in this year's elections
> > than
> > >> in 2013 - well done to those involved :)
> > >>
> > >> On the subject of voting systems, though...
> > >>
> > >> On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 9:08 AM, Anders Wennersten <
> > >> [hidden email]>
> > >> wrote:
> > >>
> > >> >
> > >> > David Cuenca Tudela skrev den 2015-06-06 09:01:
> > >> >
> > >> >> However I must say that the results of this election are hilarious.
> > The
> > >> >> person with the most support votes doesn't win because of oppose
> > votes
> > >> :D
> > >> >>
> > >> >>  Why hilarious? We had a full consensus in the election Committee
> to
> > go
> > >> > for S/N/O voting, it is a kind of standard procedure in the
> Wikimedia
> > >> world.
> > >> >
> > >>
> > >> Many people looked at voting systems before the Wikimedia movement
> > existed
> > >> and virtually none of them settled on the system we ended up with.
> > Perhaps
> > >> this should tell us something!
> > >>
> > >> To my mind the key problems with the present system are:
> > >> 1) Oppose votes have greater weight than support votes. In this case,
> > Maria
> > >> would have needed 136 additional support votes to win, or 46 fewer
> > oppose
> > >> votes. In effect an Oppose vote was worth 2.96 times as much as a
> > support
> > >> vote for her. As a result, being non-opposed is much more important
> than
> > >> being supported. The penalty for doing anything controversial is
> > >> significant.
> > >>
> > >> 2) There is nothing in the process to produce any diversity in the
> > result.
> > >> Say that there was a 2/3 to 1/3 split in the electorate on some
> > important
> > >> issue. The right answer would surely be that you elect 2 people with
> one
> > >> view and 1 with the other. However, in this voting system you would
> > likely
> > >> end up electing 3 people from the majority point of view. Because the
> > >> Wikimedia movement is much more complex than this it is difficult to
> > >> conclude that there was any particular issue like this that would have
> > >> affected the result, but still, the point applies. The voting system
> > builds
> > >> in homogeneity not diversity.
> > >>
> > >> Regards,
> > >>
> > >> Chris
> > >> _______________________________________________
> > >> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > >> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > >> [hidden email]
> > >> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l
> ,
> > >> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
> > >>
> > > _______________________________________________
> > > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > > [hidden email]
> > > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
> >
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> > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Voting system (was: Results of 2015 WMF Board elections)

Ilario Valdelli
On 06.06.2015 20:30, Risker wrote:

>
> I find it interesting that nobody seems all that worried about the FDC
> election (where 5 of 11 candidates got seats) or the FDC Ombud election
> (where both candidates came forward in the last 24 hours before nominations
> closed).  These two elections suggest some pretty big underlying problems
> as well.  Nobody seems all that upset that fewer than 10% of all the
> candidates for the 2015 elections were women - one of the lowest
> percentages ever - and that not a single woman was elected to any role for
> the first time in any election where more than one candidate was being
> elected.  On the whole, despite having a fair number of candidates outside
> of the US and areas represented by large national chapters, not a single
> non-white, non-male candidate, not a single Asian, African or Latin
> American candidate was elected.  We're pretty good at talking about
> diversity, but very poor at implementing it.
>
> Risker/Anne
>

The election's discrepancies  of FDC and Ombud can be justified. The two
committees are much technical and require some specific experience.

But it's important to stress that, excluding the two women looking for a
re-election, there were 0 new women within the candidatures.

Even there were new candidates for different areas, probably with a low
wikimedian experience, but what is really important is that no women
submitted a new candidature even white, global north living, English
speaker.

Regards

--
Ilario Valdelli
Wikimedia CH
Verein zur Förderung Freien Wissens
Association pour l’avancement des connaissances libre
Associazione per il sostegno alla conoscenza libera
Switzerland - 8008 Zürich
Tel: +41764821371
http://www.wikimedia.ch


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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Voting system (was: Results of 2015 WMF Board elections)

Pine W
In reply to this post by Risker
I'm happy with S/N/O and with the election winners, but concerned about the
diversity of the Board. I wonder if rethinking the entire board structure
is in order, for example we could have:

1. One seat per continent, elected by the whole voting community
2. Two affiliate seats chosen by all affiliates including user groups.
3. Two appointed seats with non-renewable terms.

Thoughts?

Pine
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Voting system (was: Results of 2015 WMF Board elections)

Milos Rancic-2
In reply to this post by Anders Wennersten-2
On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 8:26 PM, Anders Wennersten
<[hidden email]> wrote:
> The result could also be interpreted as a thundering success for the voting
> method being used.

Just to be clear: I think you (Election committee) did very good job.
Inside of the stable circumstances, like they are now, It's very
useful to use a voting system which would prefer new people. I just
said that this system is likely to be harmful if used for the future
elections.

On the long run, Schulze stability (basically, electing the
mainstream) vs. this variant of approval by selection gives more
weight on Schulze. But I am sure that the standing EC will find
something more appropriate for the next elections.

I think also that it's valid idea that EC chooses voting system
according to the needs of particular point of time. For example, this
time it was about giving opportunity to the new candidates. Next time
it could be more balanced. If you notice that Board is unstable (for
example, small number of those with more than two years of
experience), then Schulze again.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Voting system (was: Results of 2015 WMF Board elections)

Chris Keating-2
In reply to this post by Risker
I basically agree with the whole of Risker's post but want to expand in
this bit:

On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 7:30 PM, Risker <[hidden email]> wrote:

>   There are not very many systems, though,
> that are specifically designed to give multiple winners when one of the
> conditions is that they *not* be running on a shared ticket.
>

One of them that is well-adapted to our circumstances is the Single
Transferable Vote system.

As in Schulze, voters put candidates in order of preference. However, the
STV system is designed to produce diversity of opinion among an election
for several people (it was originally designed as a proportional system for
public elections in circumstances where there weren't "party lists").

There are also a couple of systems which try to combine the theoretical
advantages of Schulze with the practical advantages of STV and they should
be looked at as well, but STV has the advantage that it is computationally
simple (you can run an election with pen and paper, unlike Schulze or
anything related to it; there are a number of software packages that
perform counts for you; and it must be pretty easy to code as well...)

Regards,

Chris
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Voting system (was: Results of 2015 WMF Board elections)

Milos Rancic-2
In reply to this post by Pine W
On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 8:58 PM, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:
> I'm happy with S/N/O and with the election winners, but concerned about the
> diversity of the Board. I wonder if rethinking the entire board structure
> is in order, for example we could have:
>
> 1. One seat per continent, elected by the whole voting community
> 2. Two affiliate seats chosen by all affiliates including user groups.
> 3. Two appointed seats with non-renewable terms.
>
> Thoughts?

That's interesting, though I'd have some additions:
1) Not continents, but global cultural areas (i.e. not South America,
but Latin America; not Asia, but likely Mid East + North Africa, South
Asia, East Asia...).
2) Three, if we add user groups?
3) +Jimmy :) But I'd also object on non-renewable terms. Stu and
Bishakha for a long time and Jan-Bart for the most of the time were
the main sources of stability inside of the Board.

At the other side, I am thinking that we should switch from electing
the Board, to electing the Assembly, which would select the
*Executive* Board (which should be paid). ~50 members of the Assembly
wouldn't be that big financial pressure, even they would meet two
times per year.(~3000 participants of Wikimania; few hundreds of
Wikimedia Conference; and it's not likely that Assembly members would
be too much different from those who participate in those two events).

That would definitely raise participation and empower trusted members
of our community. In that case, we could make elaborate quotas, like
"at least 40% of women", "at least 5% per region" etc. It's hard to do
that with three elected members.

I think we'd be ready for that if not in 2017, then definitely in 2019/20.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Voting system (was: Results of 2015 WMF Board elections)

Risker
In reply to this post by Pine W
On 6 June 2015 at 14:58, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:

> I'm happy with S/N/O and with the election winners, but concerned about the
> diversity of the Board. I wonder if rethinking the entire board structure
> is in order, for example we could have:
>
> 1. One seat per continent, elected by the whole voting community
> 2. Two affiliate seats chosen by all affiliates including user groups.
> 3. Two appointed seats with non-renewable terms.
>
> Thoughts?
>
>
>
>
How many continents will get to have candidates?  Six? Seven? Eight?  There
was some pretty significant discussion in the current election that Europe
isn't really a unified continent, and that Eastern or Eastern/Central
Europe shouldn't be considered the same thing as Western Europe. And I'm
pretty sure we don't have anyone currently resident in Antarctica who would
meet even minimal requirements for election and who would willingly be a
candidate.

I've never really heard a good argument for the existence of the chapter
seats, which are essentially community seats elected by representatives of
less than 10% of the active community.

And I do not understand why appointed seats should not be renewable,
although I agree that term limits should apply to all seats.  These may be
the only way to ensure some diversity.


Illario mentioned before that there was only one new woman candidate for
any of these elected positions, and the only two women candidates for the
board were the incumbents.  The strong push for candidates outside of the
"traditional" areas may play a role here. Several women I approached to
consider candidacies said quite bluntly that the activities they were
working on or were planning to work on were more likely to make a
difference in the movement than having a seat on the board would have, and
certainly would be making more difference than being on the FDC would
have.  I think there's a fair amount of truth in that.

Risker/Anne
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Voting system (was: Results of 2015 WMF Board elections)

Anders Wennersten-2
In reply to this post by Milos Rancic-2
Milos Rancic skrev den 2015-06-06 21:00:
> I think also that it's valid idea that EC chooses voting system
> according to the needs of particular point of time. For example, this
> time it was about giving opportunity to the new candidates. Next time
> it could be more balanced. If you notice that Board is unstable (for
> example, small number of those with more than two years of
> experience), then Schulze again.

A very good point!

Anders

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Voting system (was: Results of 2015 WMF Board elections)

Tomasz Ganicz
In reply to this post by Milos Rancic-2
Well, the funny thing with current system is that if people had voted in
most rational way - i.e. to maximize the impact of their votes - the
results would have been negative for all candidates - as this year none of
them got more than 50% of positive votes. But in fact if all people would
vote in that way - negative votes would be negligible - as the result will
be simple exactly the same as if there will be no "no" votes - in both
methods of calculation :-) What makes negative votes so important is just
because people are not voting in rational way as they have some mental
objections to vote "no". But those brave ones (or smart ones or bad ones)
enough to vote "no" have much higher impact on the results than the others
- which I think is not good by itslef.

By the way would interesting to know how many voters voted only "yes" and
"no", and how many voted "yes" for only one candidate and "no" for all
others (the most impact for selected candidate).





2015-06-06 19:15 GMT+02:00 Milos Rancic <[hidden email]>:

> Moving this discussion into a separate thread, to leave the main one
> for best wishes and similar :)
>
> Before I start talking about the voting system itself, I have to say
> that, from my personal perspective, I wouldn't imagine better outcome:
> a Polish steward (my favorite Wikimedian group :) ), a Croat founder
> of Wikidata (whom I consider as a friend) and a very prominent English
> Wikipedian, with significant record of working with smaller languages
> (BTW, I didn't know that he's a candidate till I saw the results; I
> didn't vote, as I still don't think I am able to make informed
> decision; useful note: one year out of movement requires more than one
> year to be able to fully participate again).
>
> When I read the results for the first time, I thought that it's about
> structural changes. However, it was not. Present Board members were
> just punished as present board members (some people will always object
> your work) with negative votes, as well as Sj was punished with lack
> of positive votes because of his laziness :P
>
> The problem is obviously the voting system. And it's one more reason
> why standing committee should be created. With more time, they would
> know why it's perfect for stewards and why it isn't for any kind of
> democratic representatives (including English Wikipedia ArbCom; as far
> as I remember, this is exactly the method how en.wp ArbCom is
> elected).
>
> Stewards have to be trusted all over the projects and 80% threshold
> follows that idea. However, stewards are not reelected, they have to
> show to that they are doing good job and there is the space for those
> who are doing important, but not visible job. Bottom line is that
> stewards themselves decide if somebody would stay a steward or not.
> (If there were objections from the community.) And stewards are doing
> that job perfectly.
>
> It should be also noted that stewards are elected managers, not
> democratic representatives, which Board members and en.wp ArbCom
> members are.
>
> This system is bad because of two main reasons: (1) it isn't suitable
> for electing democratic representatives; and (2) it's very vulnerable
> to abuse, which could easily create negative culture.
>
> Applying this to the democratic elections consistently means one of
> two things: we want to have conformists in the Board or we want to
> change Board members every two years.
>
> I hope the first is not our idea. The second could be, but two years
> in office is too short period of time for a Board member to do
> anything substantially. So, this method would be a valid one if the
> term of a Board member would be, let's say, four years.
>
> The output of the elections is not democratic, as well. It's obvious
> that Maria got the most support and it's 5% more than the first one,
> as well as Phoebe had more support than the second one.
>
> While I think that opposing votes are important, they shouldn't be
> *that* important. Successful candidate had to gather 3 supporting
> votes for every opposing one. If the supporting and opposing votes
> have the same weight, it would be more fair.
>
> With the formula S-O, the results would be:
> 1) Dariusz: 2028-556=1472
> 2) Maria: 2184-775=1409
> 3) Phoebe: 1995-714=1281
> 4) James: 1857-578=1279
> 5) Denny: 1628-544=1084
>
> And the results would be much more according to the expressed will of
> the community: Dariusz is well respected steward and community has
> given him a lot of support, and as he is a new candidate he didn't do
> anything which would annoy a part of the community. Maria had
> significant opposition, but also the biggest number of supporters,
> which has to be acknowledged. Phoebe and James would have been very
> close, while Denny wouldn't reach support threshold.
>
> If one opposing vote has weight of three supporting votes, this could
> easily change the strategy of the groups interested to see one of
> their candidates as Board members. Instead of "vote for", we'd get
> "vote against" attitude. That's not just abusive toward the system,
> but also creates negative atmosphere, where candidates and supporting
> groups could start looking into each other as enemies, not as fellow
> Wikimedians.
>
> So, while the current voting system has given refreshing results, it
> would be bad to keep it as it's now. To be honest, I would avoid
> negative votes at all, as I am sure that even more fair system would
> be implemented, if it contains negative votes next time, we'll get
> much more negative votes than this time, with negative consequences
> for our culture.
>
> On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 2:16 PM, Gregory Varnum <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
> > I have a lot of personal opinions on the method, questions process, etc.
> > Many of them will be shared in the committee's post mortem (others I will
> > be discarding as I now process the last several weeks).
> >
> > Also, we are beginning to post some statistics that folks may find
> helpful:
> >
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Foundation_elections_2015/Stats
> >
> > We will be posting more on the blog next week about what all goes into
> > running the elections, and I am open to feedback on what additional
> > information we can share that would be helpful to the community. Our
> group
> > made an early commitment to transparency, and I hope that has come across
> > in our posting of major meeting minutes, posting of these stats, open
> > dialogue on Meta and email, a post mortem from the committee, and the
> > upcoming blog post.
> >
> > Finally, I want to give a big thank you to my colleagues on the Elections
> > Committee. I was, by the nature of my tasks, a bit more visible - but
> > please know that everyone worked very hard, did a great job, and deserves
> > equal gratitude. Thank you Adrian, Anders, Daniel, Katie, Mardetanha,
> > Ruslan, Savh, and Trijnstel - as well as Risker, James, Alice, Philippe,
> > Geoff, Stephen, Sylvia, Heather, Tim, and a few others I'm sure I'm
> > forgetting.
> >
> > -greg (User:Varnent)
> >
> > On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 6:19 AM, Chris Keating <
> [hidden email]>
> > wrote:
> >
> >> Congratulations to the new Board members - I am sure you will do a great
> >> job. And commiserations to those who will be leaving the Board - thank
> you
> >> for all your hard work over many years.
> >>
> >> Also it is good to see a much higher turnout in this year's elections
> than
> >> in 2013 - well done to those involved :)
> >>
> >> On the subject of voting systems, though...
> >>
> >> On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 9:08 AM, Anders Wennersten <
> >> [hidden email]>
> >> wrote:
> >>
> >> >
> >> > David Cuenca Tudela skrev den 2015-06-06 09:01:
> >> >
> >> >> However I must say that the results of this election are hilarious.
> The
> >> >> person with the most support votes doesn't win because of oppose
> votes
> >> :D
> >> >>
> >> >>  Why hilarious? We had a full consensus in the election Committee to
> go
> >> > for S/N/O voting, it is a kind of standard procedure in the Wikimedia
> >> world.
> >> >
> >>
> >> Many people looked at voting systems before the Wikimedia movement
> existed
> >> and virtually none of them settled on the system we ended up with.
> Perhaps
> >> this should tell us something!
> >>
> >> To my mind the key problems with the present system are:
> >> 1) Oppose votes have greater weight than support votes. In this case,
> Maria
> >> would have needed 136 additional support votes to win, or 46 fewer
> oppose
> >> votes. In effect an Oppose vote was worth 2.96 times as much as a
> support
> >> vote for her. As a result, being non-opposed is much more important than
> >> being supported. The penalty for doing anything controversial is
> >> significant.
> >>
> >> 2) There is nothing in the process to produce any diversity in the
> result.
> >> Say that there was a 2/3 to 1/3 split in the electorate on some
> important
> >> issue. The right answer would surely be that you elect 2 people with one
> >> view and 1 with the other. However, in this voting system you would
> likely
> >> end up electing 3 people from the majority point of view. Because the
> >> Wikimedia movement is much more complex than this it is difficult to
> >> conclude that there was any particular issue like this that would have
> >> affected the result, but still, the point applies. The voting system
> builds
> >> in homogeneity not diversity.
> >>
> >> Regards,
> >>
> >> Chris
> >> _______________________________________________
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> >>
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--
Tomek "Polimerek" Ganicz
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http://www.ganicz.pl/poli/
http://www.cbmm.lodz.pl/work.php?id=29&title=tomasz-ganicz
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Voting system (was: Results of 2015 WMF Board elections)

Milos Rancic-2
On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 10:13 PM, Tomasz Ganicz <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Well, the funny thing with current system is that if people had voted in
> most rational way - i.e. to maximize the impact of their votes - the
> results would have been negative for all candidates - as this year none of
> them got more than 50% of positive votes. But in fact if all people would
> vote in that way - negative votes would be negligible - as the result will
> be simple exactly the same as if there will be no "no" votes - in both
> methods of calculation :-) What makes negative votes so important is just
> because people are not voting in rational way as they have some mental
> objections to vote "no". But those brave ones (or smart ones or bad ones)
> enough to vote "no" have much higher impact on the results than the others
> - which I think is not good by itslef.
>
> By the way would interesting to know how many voters voted only "yes" and
> "no", and how many voted "yes" for only one candidate and "no" for all
> others (the most impact for selected candidate).

Based on the numbers, it's likely that the voting was dominantly like:
"I want this candidate or two"; "I have no opinion about these
candidates"; and "I really really wouldn't like to see this one or two
as Board members".

I'd say that our democracy depends on such behavior of voters, as at
the end we are getting good people in the Board, no matter who has
been elected particularly. However, it could change and it could have
dramatic consequences, as we are operating with small numbers.

What's more likely to be seen as the outcome of "rational voting" is
to get one or few candidates with 50% less opposing votes and although
it wouldn't need to be bad in the sense of particular candidates, it
would make very negative consequences to the rest of the community.

First time such thing happens, next time we'd have bitter fight for
every vote. And that would be the changing point: from friendly to
competitive atmosphere. It would also mean that we'd get serious
hidden lobby groups. (We have them now, but it's relaxed and much more
about "it would be great if our candidate would pass", than about
serious fights for own candidates.)

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Voting system (was: Results of 2015 WMF Board elections)

James Alexander-4
[For the record I'm running the vote dumps now that should allow some of
that analysis to be done by those interested. No exact promises on timing
because while I'll send it out today it will take some time to approve for
anonymization etc.]

James Alexander
Community Advocacy
Wikimedia Foundation
(415) 839-6885 x6716 @jamesofur

On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 1:39 PM, Milos Rancic <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 10:13 PM, Tomasz Ganicz <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
> > Well, the funny thing with current system is that if people had voted in
> > most rational way - i.e. to maximize the impact of their votes - the
> > results would have been negative for all candidates - as this year none
> of
> > them got more than 50% of positive votes. But in fact if all people would
> > vote in that way - negative votes would be negligible - as the result
> will
> > be simple exactly the same as if there will be no "no" votes - in both
> > methods of calculation :-) What makes negative votes so important is just
> > because people are not voting in rational way as they have some mental
> > objections to vote "no". But those brave ones (or smart ones or bad ones)
> > enough to vote "no" have much higher impact on the results than the
> others
> > - which I think is not good by itslef.
> >
> > By the way would interesting to know how many voters voted only "yes" and
> > "no", and how many voted "yes" for only one candidate and "no" for all
> > others (the most impact for selected candidate).
>
> Based on the numbers, it's likely that the voting was dominantly like:
> "I want this candidate or two"; "I have no opinion about these
> candidates"; and "I really really wouldn't like to see this one or two
> as Board members".
>
> I'd say that our democracy depends on such behavior of voters, as at
> the end we are getting good people in the Board, no matter who has
> been elected particularly. However, it could change and it could have
> dramatic consequences, as we are operating with small numbers.
>
> What's more likely to be seen as the outcome of "rational voting" is
> to get one or few candidates with 50% less opposing votes and although
> it wouldn't need to be bad in the sense of particular candidates, it
> would make very negative consequences to the rest of the community.
>
> First time such thing happens, next time we'd have bitter fight for
> every vote. And that would be the changing point: from friendly to
> competitive atmosphere. It would also mean that we'd get serious
> hidden lobby groups. (We have them now, but it's relaxed and much more
> about "it would be great if our candidate would pass", than about
> serious fights for own candidates.)
>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Voting system (was: Results of 2015 WMF Board elections)

geni
In reply to this post by Pine W
On 6 June 2015 at 19:58, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:

> I'm happy with S/N/O and with the election winners, but concerned about the
> diversity of the Board. I wonder if rethinking the entire board structure
> is in order, for example we could have:
>
> 1. One seat per continent, elected by the whole voting community
>

Continents have widely varying populations. Europe has a population of
about 0.75 billion while Asia is over 2 billion



> 2. Two affiliate seats chosen by all affiliates including user groups.
>

The problem is that this tends to favor pure political players. I'm not
saying its a bad thing to have excellent networkers on the board but there
are other factors that should matter.


>


--
geni
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Voting system (was: Results of 2015 WMF Board elections)

Craig Franklin
In reply to this post by Pine W
I think this is dancing around the perceived problem.  You can either have
open, democratic, and fair elections with a result that represents the will
of the electorate, or you can have a group of people who are diverse in
terms of nationality, gender, ethnicity, etcetera.  Not both.  And I don't
think that tinkering with the formula for election and board composition is
really going to do anything to address that.

Seeing the candidates that stood, I think that the real problem is the lack
of female candidates for us to elect.  And that is a cultural problem,
exacerbated by the fact that unfortunately Wikimedia projects can be quite
a hostile place for women, and understandably many women don't want to make
themselves targets for harassment.  Once there is a more even number of men
and women running, I think that this particular problem will take care of
itself.

Cheers,
Craig

On 7 June 2015 at 04:58, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:

> I'm happy with S/N/O and with the election winners, but concerned about the
> diversity of the Board. I wonder if rethinking the entire board structure
> is in order, for example we could have:
>
> 1. One seat per continent, elected by the whole voting community
> 2. Two affiliate seats chosen by all affiliates including user groups.
> 3. Two appointed seats with non-renewable terms.
>
> Thoughts?
>
> Pine
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Voting system (was: Results of 2015 WMF Board elections)

Dariusz Jemielniak-3
In reply to this post by James Alexander-4
I agree that negative votes have possibly too much weight in the current
system. But there is one other problem with what we have: people from some
cultures may be much more reluctant to cast tactical negative votes. If
this is so, because of cultural differences we privilege cultures more flex
about expressing dissent. James Alexander has promised to look into raw
data, as this effect would be observable. If it shows up, it is yet another
argument to drop the current voting method.

best,

dj

On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 10:48 PM, James Alexander <[hidden email]>
wrote:

> [For the record I'm running the vote dumps now that should allow some of
> that analysis to be done by those interested. No exact promises on timing
> because while I'll send it out today it will take some time to approve for
> anonymization etc.]
>
> James Alexander
> Community Advocacy
> Wikimedia Foundation
> (415) 839-6885 x6716 @jamesofur
>
> On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 1:39 PM, Milos Rancic <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> > On Sat, Jun 6, 2015 at 10:13 PM, Tomasz Ganicz <[hidden email]>
> > wrote:
> > > Well, the funny thing with current system is that if people had voted
> in
> > > most rational way - i.e. to maximize the impact of their votes - the
> > > results would have been negative for all candidates - as this year none
> > of
> > > them got more than 50% of positive votes. But in fact if all people
> would
> > > vote in that way - negative votes would be negligible - as the result
> > will
> > > be simple exactly the same as if there will be no "no" votes - in both
> > > methods of calculation :-) What makes negative votes so important is
> just
> > > because people are not voting in rational way as they have some mental
> > > objections to vote "no". But those brave ones (or smart ones or bad
> ones)
> > > enough to vote "no" have much higher impact on the results than the
> > others
> > > - which I think is not good by itslef.
> > >
> > > By the way would interesting to know how many voters voted only "yes"
> and
> > > "no", and how many voted "yes" for only one candidate and "no" for all
> > > others (the most impact for selected candidate).
> >
> > Based on the numbers, it's likely that the voting was dominantly like:
> > "I want this candidate or two"; "I have no opinion about these
> > candidates"; and "I really really wouldn't like to see this one or two
> > as Board members".
> >
> > I'd say that our democracy depends on such behavior of voters, as at
> > the end we are getting good people in the Board, no matter who has
> > been elected particularly. However, it could change and it could have
> > dramatic consequences, as we are operating with small numbers.
> >
> > What's more likely to be seen as the outcome of "rational voting" is
> > to get one or few candidates with 50% less opposing votes and although
> > it wouldn't need to be bad in the sense of particular candidates, it
> > would make very negative consequences to the rest of the community.
> >
> > First time such thing happens, next time we'd have bitter fight for
> > every vote. And that would be the changing point: from friendly to
> > competitive atmosphere. It would also mean that we'd get serious
> > hidden lobby groups. (We have them now, but it's relaxed and much more
> > about "it would be great if our candidate would pass", than about
> > serious fights for own candidates.)
> >
> > _______________________________________________
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> >
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--

__________________________
prof. dr hab. Dariusz Jemielniak
kierownik katedry Zarządzania Międzynarodowego
i centrum badawczego CROW
Akademia Leona Koźmińskiego
http://www.crow.alk.edu.pl

członek Akademii Młodych Uczonych Polskiej Akademii Nauk
członek Komitetu Polityki Naukowej MNiSW

Wyszła pierwsza na świecie etnografia Wikipedii "Common Knowledge? An
Ethnography of Wikipedia" (2014, Stanford University Press) mojego
autorstwa http://www.sup.org/book.cgi?id=24010

Recenzje
Forbes: http://www.forbes.com/fdc/welcome_mjx.shtml
Pacific Standard:
http://www.psmag.com/navigation/books-and-culture/killed-wikipedia-93777/
Motherboard: http://motherboard.vice.com/read/an-ethnography-of-wikipedia
The Wikipedian:
http://thewikipedian.net/2014/10/10/dariusz-jemielniak-common-knowledge
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Voting system (was: Results of 2015 WMF Board elections)

Pine W
Regarding contents / geographic vs. cultural areas: I think either would
make sense. One way of looking at cultural areas would be the ways that the
affiliates spontaneously organized ourselves at WMCON, possibly with a few
additions.

Regarding differing population sizes: yes, but there will be imperfections
no matter how we arrange a system. Regardless, we can design a system that
is better than the one we have now, and I hear no one in this thread saying
that the current board structure should be maintained.

Regarding negative votes:

# We use S/N/O for many other kinds of votes, including FDC, steward,
Arbitration Committee, and featured content votes. I have not heard
disagreement with it until now, which suggests that generally there is
consensus for this system.

# If the system was confusing, I would have expected people to ask
questions on the vote talk page for FDC and Board elections. While there
were other questions on the vote talk page, no one asked about the S/N/O
system. See
https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Talk:Wikimedia_Foundation_elections_2015

# One of the best features of S/N/O is that it works to favor candidates
who have consensus for them, i.e. have both a good quantity of supporters
and have few people who oppose their election. If someone has many support
votes and many oppose votes, this suggests that the person is relatively
controversial, which probably makes them a less optimal choice for roles
like FDC, Steward, Arbitration Committee, and WMF Board roles.

I'm open to hearing of better systems than S/N/O, but at this point I
continue to support S/N/O, and judging by how many kinds of votes we have
in the Wikimedia community with the S/N/O system, it appears that there is
general consensus for this model.

Pine
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Voting system (was: Results of 2015 WMF Board elections)

Milos Rancic-2
On Sun, Jun 7, 2015 at 9:02 PM, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:

> # We use S/N/O for many other kinds of votes, including FDC, steward,
> Arbitration Committee, and featured content votes. I have not heard
> disagreement with it until now, which suggests that generally there is
> consensus for this system.
> ...
> # One of the best features of S/N/O is that it works to favor candidates
> who have consensus for them, i.e. have both a good quantity of supporters
> and have few people who oppose their election. If someone has many support
> votes and many oppose votes, this suggests that the person is relatively
> controversial, which probably makes them a less optimal choice for roles
> like FDC, Steward, Arbitration Committee, and WMF Board roles.

From my perspective, and I don't think it's unique, those elections
are quite different:

* FDC: Realistically, just people from chapters and thematic
organizations are interested in this. And if I am a Board member of a
chapter, my rational approach would be to approach other chapters and
make a deal with them who should be elected. Basically, that
population decides anyway. Besides the fact that a lot of us don't
feel comfortable to make political decision for expert seats, while we
don't have precise clue what we should require from the candidates.
It's not the duty of *every* member of the community to be an expert
in hiring grantmaking staff.

* English Wikipedia ArbCom: At some point of time I was very active on
en.wp, but I was never interested in en.wp governance (not even to
become an admin). I think that the majority of non-native English
speakers have such approach to en.wp. On the other side, I would note
that being a member of en.wp's ArbCom is highly stressful position and
I don't think that there are many of long-term ArbCom members (in
comparison to, let's say, WMF Board). I am sure that one of the most
important reasons are negative votes, exactly. You can't do good job
if you want to be reelected.

* Stewards are the third category and this system is actually perfect
for their elections: both public and requiring 80% of support.
Stewards are not going to reelections. Other stewards review their
work, while openness of the group is guarantied by constant elections.

* Negative votes tend to make the whole atmosphere much more tense,
stressful for both the community and Board members. Besides the
reasons I (and others) have given into the previous emails.

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