[OpenStack Foundation] Individual Member Election Statistics

Dave Neary dneary at redhat.com
Wed Oct 3 09:29:46 UTC 2012


On 10/03/2012 10:07 AM, Thierry Carrez wrote:
> I think those results are the *natural* consequence of the low barrier
> to membership combined with using cumulative voting. Using an election
> method specifically designed to preserve proportionality with a
> membership method that doesn't preserve proportionality is not that good.
> I'd agree that some companies displayed an impressive voting discipline,
> but you could also trace that back to the low barrier to membership
> issue: if you're not that involved in OpenStack, you're more likely to
> vote for local candidates.

I mostly agree with you Thierry - although I will say that such voting 
discipline typically requires very high profile candidates from the 
company or some kind of "vote for me" campaign so that people are aware 
who is running - I know I don't yet know thousands of my Red Hat 
colleagues, for example. That said, no-one ever said election campaigns 
were immoral - even if, by definition, they do manipulate the results of 
elections ;-)

The natural follow-on question, then, is whether this natural 
consequence of the membership rules is a desirable one or not? And if it 
is not desirable, what can be done now, if anything, to remedy the 

> The affiliation limit worked well to avoid getting too many people from
> the same over-represented-in-membership corporate entity, so I think
> damage is limited. And we vote again in 3 months, with that data in mind.

I would hate to see an "arms race" where other companies start 
encouraging their employees to join and vote for "their" candidates - 
this is the kind of short-term tactical behaviour which could result 
from the impression of block voting from other participants, which would 
have a long-term negative impact on the foundation.

> Personally I regret that what should have been an "individuals elect
> individual representative" case ended up being "company employees elect
> company representative", but that's about it. We need to discuss how to
> raise the bar of membership entry just enough to improve that.

... in a way that handles the fact that there are >6000 members already 
signed up, many of whom would not meet any such raised bar.


Dave Neary
Community Action and Impact
Open Source and Standards, Red Hat
Ph: +33 9 50 71 55 62 / Cell: +33 6 77 01 92 13

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