[OpenStack Foundation] Board discussing how to improve the Individual Director election process, community input wanted

Doug Hellmann doug.hellmann at dreamhost.com
Sun Nov 18 16:57:21 UTC 2012

On Sun, Nov 18, 2012 at 11:42 AM, Mark McLoughlin <markmc at redhat.com> wrote:

> Hi Tim,
> On Sun, 2012-11-18 at 14:47 +0000, Tim Bell wrote:
> > Mark,
> >
> > The proposals for actions to be taken for the 2013 individual elections
> were
> > prepared by Tristan, Hui and myself.  We are individual board members
> but do
> > not have any affiliation with companies who have platinum or gold member
> > seats (which is where the concern has been expressed).
> That's fair.
> > This is as Johnathan communicated on November 2nd
> > (
> http://lists.openstack.org/pipermail/foundation/2012-November/001237.html)
> > - "Discussed options for updates to the election process. Tim Bell, Hui
> > Cheng and Tristan Goode are pulling together some recommendations that
> they
> > will be sharing with the mailing list for feedback before the election
> > period opens with nominations on November 26."
> Ah, apologies. I missed the significance of this.
> > Given that the board meeting to propose the sub-committee was only
> agreed on
> > Nov 2nd, we were pleased to get the letter published on the 13th for the
> > board meeting on the 16th.  The time zone differences between Europe and
> > Australia didn't make it easy to do it faster.
> It's a reasonable turnaround from Nov 2nd, yes.
> > Rob, Toby and Troy were also involved in the brainstorming prior to that
> to
> > cover possibilities for both (as shown in the etherpad  at
> > https://etherpad.openstack.org/Board-2012-VotingProposals). Many of
> these
> > proposals were  extracted from ideas on the mailing list. The 4
> > possibilities proposed for the 2013 elections were those where the bylaws
> > permitted us to change within the timescales available. The other options
> > can be debated during 2013 and proposals can then be prepared to be
> voted on
> > according to the bylaws.
> I'm disappointed by the fact that bylaws changes were ruled out, but I
> get it. I also think you guys did a good job of capturing the ideas that
> were discussed on the mailing list. The result isn't the issue, it's the
> process.
> In retrospect what I really find odd is the way we have a bunch of
> engaged, constructive and interested people actively discussing ideas on
> the mailing list. Then a completely different group goes off and
> discusses ideas privately and, a month later, comes back with a
> conclusion giving the original group mere days to give feedback.
> I guess from the perspective of members of the board, you've seen the
> issue taken seriously and actively worked to a conclusion. From the
> perspective of not being on the board, I see little engagement from the
> board in the original discussion, silence and then a big reveal. It's
> not the kind of open, collaborative process I'd hope for.
> Then again, no-one else seems to be taking issue with the process so
> it'd be fair to count me as one of the "No matter what we do, there will
> be people who object" crowd :)

I thought you made a fair point, but didn't have anything to add at the

As far as the process, I perceive it in much the same way as your.
Sometimes it helps to focus by assigning a task like this to a small number
of people, rather than have the discussions happen with *everyone* in the
community. On the other hand, in this case there was already an ongoing
discussion with a small number of participants providing thoughtful input.
It would have been appropriate to include them more directly in the
"pulling together some recommendations" activities. It is not necessary for
the board members to do all of the work of running the foundation by
themselves, after all.


> Cheers,
> Mark.
> _______________________________________________
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> Foundation at lists.openstack.org
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