[OpenStack Foundation] Proposals for individual board election

Lloyd Dewolf lloydostack at gmail.com
Thu Nov 1 17:32:02 UTC 2012

A. The OpenStack Foundation's individual members that voted in the 1st
Individual Member Election was dominated by Rackspace, Dell, and HP

B. A simple manual sampling using web search suggests the majority of
these individual members only public participation in OpenStack has
been voting in the election.

C. The majority of these members voted for candidates from their
company. Based on the strict affiliation of voting it's incredibly
unlikely that the majority of these members considered the abilities
and individual positions of other candidates, otherwise statistically
there should have been more voting for multiple candidates,
specifically more unaffiliated votes.

Unfortunately over time there will be more abuse and more large
organizations participating in this arms races.

On Thu, Nov 1, 2012 at 6:44 AM, Bret Piatt <bret.piatt at rackspace.com> wrote:
> ... If people care enough about OpenStack to create an account, learn the voting process, and show up at the virtual voting booth their voice should be heard.  ...

This only demonstrates they care enough about the success of their
company, who's leadership encouraged them taking the 5 minutes to vote
for their company's leadership.

This is confirmed has there has not been a tsunami of participation
from Dell, HP, and Rackspace since the election. The disproportionate
membership is not reflected by disproportionate participation in

On Wed, Oct 31, 2012 at 8:05 PM, Alan Clark <aclark at suse.com> wrote:
> Second people keep drawing the conclusion that because person X with a mail address of X at bigcompany.com voted for candidate at bigcompany.com they purposefully gamed the system.  Have we asked them?  My findings are that they simply voted for candidate at bigcompany.com because they knew that person and felt that they would do a great job. Being new to the community they weren't as familiar with the other candidates - particularly candidates from other companies.

Where and how did you ask "them"? You think your sampling is likely to
be representative? You think there will be statistically significant
full ballet voting in January by this no-longer-new membership if
there is not fundamental changes to the membership and election?

On Wed, Oct 31, 2012 at 12:36 PM, Stefano Maffulli
<stefano at openstack.org> wrote:
> On 10/31/2012 06:21 PM, Carl Trieloff wrote:
>> Having 600+ alligned votes from a single company entirely violates
>> the 'Do what is best for the project',
> Why do you say that? Are the people elected not the best possible
> people? Have they failed (or why do you think they will fail)
> representing the interests of Individual Members? Do you believe that
> some of them will vote for the company before they vote for the project
> and not do what's best for OpenStack?

Those are not the most relevant questions -- what does "best possible
people" even mean, how could that even be answered.

Does the Individual Member Director election process support
individual candidates skilled at governance and knowledgable about
OpenStack and Open Source project governance?

Does the Individual Member Director election process support
candidates with broad (or diverse) support?

Do the results of Individual Member Director election process reflect
the will of OpenStack Foundation individual *participants* ?

We need to add *active* membership to the equation. The most immediate
way to do this is to force diversity of the board, and then work the
long process to ensure only an active community is voting and rollback
the original diversity measures.

Although, I think not being able to vote for someone from your own
organization is a fantastically novel solution, it also seems
impractical as it would require a specialized voting system, which I
don't think currently exists. The pragmatic immediate solutions
continue to be:

0. Use a Condorcet or other rank voting system

1. Allow no affiliated board members, ie strict diversity of the board.

Also, I'd like to see the "Statement of Interest" to require the
applicants to identify how they feel they have participated to
OpenStack in the last year -- there are no correct answers. This will
be published as part of their profile online. This should provide
interesting insights, some small benefit to membership self-selection
with no harmful side effects.

Once again, even with these challenges, I'm very thankful that all the
Individual members of the board are brilliant representatives.

Once individual representation is ensured on this plane, we can move
on to safeguarding against geographic dominance ;-)

Thank you,

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