8 Aug 2007 slef   » (Master)

SPI Elections: Corrections

Well, yesterday I asked

"WTF? There seem to be some 30 or 40 voters who really dislike me, but didn't tell me that straight, preferring to be silent then vote me down. Are you cowards, or what?"

Not the most polite of questions(!), but it's what I was wondering at the time.

I had some good replies in the comments and a reply by Pingback that I didn't like, but it turned out to be a very educational reply in the end.

A comment from Filipus Klutiero included:

"Sometimes, it's not really possible to explain a bad opinion of someone, because we forget the reasons for that opinion. However, if you think that voting based on reputation is a bad idea, you probably can't understand these "cowards"."

I've mentioned before that I don't seem to fit the debian developers stereotype, so I guess it's not surprising if I don't understand them sometimes.

If reputation is always going to be such a big factor, one problem I need to overcome in debian and SPI is that some other participants do make crap up about me. You can usually spot it by phrases like "seems to think" (there are not that many mind-readers out there), but eventually, mud sticks. How to overcome this? Patiently post corrections, or is that futile?

Here are posts from Andrew Pollock and Matt Palmer which I think are wrong on several points:-

First off, I haven't decided to call anyone cowards - it was a question, albeit a bit "nasty, british and short". The underlying sentiment was continued disappointment and puzzlement at why voters behave like that in a non-secret vote, not rage. It was not really an "outburst," coming a week after the results.

I'm not unhappy with the results - I've congratulated the winners by several methods, including the last post, although I mentioned my mixed feelings. Isn't that usual? I think very few non-elected candidates express unbridled joy about the experience. After all, it's not an easy decision to stand, but I did it for two main reasons: shortage of other candidates I really liked, at the time I chose to stand (as I mentioned in my platform); and for practical experience of how Condorcet behaves.

I'm not rabid - I've even written against the Rabid Right recently - and I'm not rabidly anti-Google. I had polite chats with various people from Sun, Microsoft and Google at debconf - I don't like those companies, but I don't feel a need to tell their workers that at every point. I think reasons to like and dislike Sun and Microsoft are old and well-known, but a few years ago, I got so bored of explaining why I don't agree that Google is God's Gift to our communities that I posted a FAQ-ish page about it, which I update as I look at its new developments. Let's politely disagree, until Google fix the bugs which brought me to that view.

Andrew Pollock's point about debian-legal is vague and maybe fair comment. It's not often a fun or popular thing. But "precious ego"? Ha! Yes, a guy who humiliates himself with cheap stunts for environmental protests is clearly very precious about his ego(!) (Sorry if that's rude, but I find it hilarious.)

I don't mind people having different opinions, but it would be nice if their opinions about me were mostly based on reality, instead of misunderstandings.

One fair point from Matt Palmer's post and also, I discovered eventually, from Antti-Juhani Kaijanaho's site, is that SPI's elections apparently are meant to be secret, as far as I can tell from the starts of Article Five and Article Seven of the SPI by-laws.

I tend to value practice more than theory and the current voting practice is merely confidential, not secret. I think that's part of why I didn't understand the approach taken by some voters - they were treating it as a secret ballot. That's fine and now that I realise it's meant to be secret, I've suggested making it a secret ballot.

Syndicated 2007-08-08 09:15:00 from MJR slef-reflection Recent Changes

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