Talk:Wikimedia Foundation elections/Board elections/2011

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For ideas about improving future elections, see the post-mortem

Contents

Details to remember[edit]

(Please add only specific, practical points.)

  • Notification email:
    • provide direct links to vote from the correct wiki, and mention they can't vote from any wiki.
  • Vote wiki:
    • hide login links using CSS.

—The preceding unsigned comment was added by Pathoschild (talk) 11 August 2009


Vote For How Many?[edit]

It would be helpful if it said right at the top of this page how many positions there are to vote for. I know it says it elsewhere, but right here where we are looking over the candidates would be the most useful place. 206.55.187.14 09:31, 11 June 2011 (UTC)


Voting period[edit]

The word through implies passing a boundary: Someone who intends to go through a door will not walk up to it and stop (not even in between Kanada and Mexico). So elections should be held from 29 May to 12 June 2011 instead of from May 29th through June 12th 2011 (unless this is a very US-specific event; but even then the aforementioned alternative (not alternate, but this is another mystery to be clarified not here and now :-) phrasing should be clearer (not least of all, because it emphasises the important boundaries, the days, by mentioning them first). -- cookies didn't keep my secure log-in so I'll remain anonymous

See wikt:through#Preposition, the usage of "through" implies that the latter date is included in the range. So "through June 12th" means that the election goes on until the end of June 12th, and not the beginning of June 12th. Hope that clarifies. Jon Harald Søby 09:29, 2 May 2011 (UTC)

I know this local and inhumanly (or humanly when you've just heard the news ;-) unreasonable usage of through (the word meaning would feel strange, too reasonable, in this context). My points are: – it is local; – it is illogical; – there is a global and (more) logical alternative; – it is reasonable to use this alternative. -- still anonymous

Neither Wiktionary, Merriam-Webster, dictionary.com or Cambridge Advanced Learner's dictionary have any indicator that this usage of "through" is non-standard, local or illogical, so I don't see the problem. Jon Harald Søby 10:05, 2 May 2011 (UTC)

Just as you did not see that cambridge.org labels this as US (local from a global point of view) usage. At dictionary.com this is only 2 (obscuring if not contradictory) of 25 meanings (7 and 19) and the entry seems largly copied from merry-webster; both fail to point out the locality of this usage. And dictionaries only describe what is there, they do not promote reason. Since going to a door is very different from going through a door it is only reasonable to use two different words to communicate this; all the more so when two such words (as given in the examples) happen to already be in common (as opposed to local) use. Merely pointing out that something is as it is, is no argument for it having to be the way it is. --109.90.144.240 12:28, 2 May 2011 (UTC)

Times given[edit]

Midnight should be clearer by using 24:00, the special value for it, instead of 00:00. Additionally it should be made clear whether this is also true for the 29 May, which it is probably(? speaking from experience …) not, but 00:00 (morning) of the 29 May instead. -- anonymous by impossible secure log-in

We use 00:00 to denote the beginning of one day, and 23:59 to denote the end of one. I think that is clear enough. Jon Harald Søby 09:40, 2 May 2011 (UTC)
It is. So one is to understand the given "midnight" 00:00 on 12 June as 23:59 on 11 June? or as 00:00 on 13 June practically being 23:59 on 12 June? It is quite unusual to give a date of which one does not even allow the first second to be used. Really not trying to get on anyone's nerves, but the small benefit of a small improvement really belittles the tiny effort it requires by being multiplied by the number of readers. --109.90.144.240 11:47, 2 May 2011 (UTC)
00:00 is the usual UTC designation of midnight. While both 00:00 and 24:00 are technically correct, usage of the latter is far less standard, particularly within Wikimedia, where 00:00 has been used in numerous prior elections. I don't believe this needs changing. Ral315 (talk) 13:44, 2 May 2011 (UTC)
Right, they are both at midnight; the trouble being that the midnight 00:00 of say the 12th of June is 24 hours earlier than the midnight 24:00 of 12 June. The same goes for say 29 May (and each and every other day of any year :-) leaving a maximum uncertainty of 48 hours between the maximum and minimum interpretation of the midnights (if one failed to notice that 00:00 on a date always denotes the beginning of that day) – which leads back to the questions above … --109.90.144.240 15:10, 2 May 2011 (UTC)
I really don't understand what you're getting at. The election will begin at 00:00 UTC 29 May, and end at 23:59 UTC 12 June. How could this possibly be misconstrued? Ral315 (talk) 21:07, 2 May 2011 (UTC)
It could best be misconstrued by reading June 12th and All times on this page are 00:00 (midnight) UTC. (on the board elections 2011 page) which is – something completely different (from 23:59 UTC 12 June. OK not completely, but 24 hours earlier, just had to use the phrase :-). By the way (regarding your first reply): something is standard or it isn't; things may be more or less usual or common – something completely different from standard, let alone the horrid abuse of it as 'preset, preconfigured' or even 'what we want you to buy'. -- forgotten to try the secure log-in and then go here just to be asked to log in
Please note that this language has been removed. The elections will end at 23:59 UTC on 12 June. Ral315 (talk) 21:39, 26 May 2011 (UTC)

Question[edit]

Why were a number of the candidates deleted?? Mrmewe 02:21, 4 May 2011 (UTC)

A number of candidates did not meet the requirements listed here, and yours was mistakenly removed. It has been added back. Ral315 (talk) 01:40, 5 May 2011 (UTC)

My summary has been deleted eventhough I do meet the requirements.--Stephan Spahn 14:23, 10 May 2011 (UTC)

Hey Stephan, the requirements ask for 300 edits to Wikimedia projects prior to 15 April (this might not have been entirely clear given that the candidates requirements section references the voter pre-requisites, where that requirement is listed). According to the SUL tool you don't appear to have made 300 edits. I am guessing that is why you were considered ineligible(you'd have to wait for a response from the election committee to confirm that of course) --ErrantX 14:34, 10 May 2011 (UTC)

This List http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spezial:Beiträge/Stephan_Spahn seemed to contain 500 items (because this number stands on top), but in fact there are less. Nevertheless the deleted summarys of candidates should be sent back to them, since these are their property. --Stephan Spahn 18:11, 10 May 2011 (UTC)

If I understand you correctly, then you should go to this page and ask to make those versions of Board_elections/2011/Candidates/en, that contain your candidacy, invisible. Markus Schulze 19:16, 10 May 2011 (UTC)

Urdu Translation of Board elections/2011/en page[edit]

Dear Concern,

As, Wikipedia is my own house and world of every single user of Wiki therefore I would love to contribute by translating Board elections/2011/en page in Urdu language as I am Native Urdu speaker, would you be kind enough to permit my self to be a part of this honor.

I will be honestly waiting for your rapid reply.

Best Regards,

Faizan ALi Varya Wikipedian Faizan Ali Varya Wikipedia Profile --Faizanalivarya 05:28, 4 May 2011 (UTC)

Questions[edit]

The page shows a Voting has not begun message. The time to send questions to candidates is/will starts when? 555 15:31, 8 May 2011 (UTC)

This is a good question. It would be nice if there were some sorting process by which the most popular questions filtered to the first page; readers often have a hard time reading through all questions, and last election they were posted in the order that they were written. SJ talk | translate   05:38, 9 May 2011 (UTC)
This year we dont have any questions ... ;-) John Vandenberg 12:45, 9 May 2011 (UTC)
Questions can be asked any time. There were problems in the beginning because the template used was wrong, but it should now be possible to ask and answer questions easily. We may need to advertise it a little though, any suggestions to where? Jon Harald Søby 08:34, 10 May 2011 (UTC)

Candidate Statements[edit]

Reading some of the candidate statements some appear to be over the 1200 character limit (by a relatively large margin, or I wouldn't have raised this). On a bit of digging all but one of those whose were over are under 1200 characters without including spaces. Can we get a clarification on which is the accepted value to use? I'm not fussed about forcing people to reduce statements, but if w/o spaces is acceptable I have a couple issues I can use up the extra 200 characters in my own statement :) It took a while to pare things down to 1200 chars (and I am sure all the other candidates had the same issues!) and some stuff necessarily had to go --ErrantX 10:01, 9 May 2011 (UTC)

I think we can be nice and not count spaces... :-) Jon Harald Søby 08:31, 10 May 2011 (UTC)
For future elections, to allow using the automated character-counting utilities in most word-processors, I think the limit should be increased to 1500 characters including spaces.Enon 16:30, 31 May 2011 (UTC)

Comments?[edit]

Sorry for being silly :) , am I right saying that there is no place to comment on a single candidate? Even if I had a question, it would be just for this one (as I kinda know the others or I think I'd know what their answers would be). --Elitre 12:31, 10 May 2011 (UTC)

Not in any formal way connected to the election, but you can always use their user talk page. Jon Harald Søby 15:14, 10 May 2011 (UTC)

Questions sandbox?[edit]

Might it be useful to strongly suggest that question-askers first post their questions to a sandbox where other interested community members can comment on the question first before making it an official question for the candidates? This might remove some duplicated or otherwise trivially answered factual material and lower the reading / responding volume for anyone. Also is their no facility provided for public questions to specific candidates? Some of the candidate statements include very specific platform statements which raise questions which would be inapplicable to other candidates. --Gmaxwell 03:30, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

  • +1 to this, seems like a good idea. It would be nice to see what questions have traction as being something people care about, and also merge questions. -- phoebe | talk 17:56, 5 June 2011 (UTC)

Not the Schulze method again <groan>[edit]

I am surprised that there was not any discussion about whether or not this was the appropriate voting method, after concerns had been expressed in previous elections. There is no way to indicate in the Schulze method that one absolutely does not want a certain candidate to succeed. It is also a non-transparent system in that, short of someone doing considerable research about the system itself, it is not obvious that all ranked candidates are more highly rated than entirely unranked candidates. It is natural for people who have no other way to object to a candidate to "rank" them in the last possible position (i.e., if there are 19 candidates, to rank the candidate one doesn't want to be appointed as #19). This has created an artificially high result in the past, and is likely to do so again.

Since it is probably too late to do anything about this now, please include a warning to voters to rank *only* candidates they feel would be suitable for trusteeship, and to leave those they feel unsuitable unranked. Risker 05:38, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

IIRC, There is nothing wrong with ranking all of them, including ones you don't consider unsuitable. What is problematic is ranking only top and bottom of the pack people, then leaving middle ground people unranked. It's not really a property of Schulze it's a property of ranked ballots. This could be improved by an improved UI which e.g. shows the ranking that your ballot provides. I think I pointed to some examples in the paste that let you rank by dragging and dropping to change the order— and showed the unranked as all tying each other for last but no one has bothered to do the software to make it real... :( --Gmaxwell 04:17, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
I believe one can use rankings that are greater than the number of candidates (I ranked two at 49 and 50 and several at ~25, and my ballot was accepted). One can use tiers - ranking all the middle/indifferent candidates about the same, but lower than all the good candidates, and all the bad candidates much, much lower. Enon 16:39, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
My issue with the Schulze method is that you seem to need to be a computer, or have multiple degrees in mathematics to understand what's going on, for anything but a non-trivial case. The resulting opaqueness of the voting system reduces public confidence and makes the eventual result a bit of an article of faith for most. I'd much prefer to see a simpler system like Hare-Clark used as future elections, where it's possible for anyone with a sheet of paper, a pen, and some basic arithmetic to reproduce the distribution of preferences. Craig Franklin 04:13, 11 June 2011 (UTC).

The Schulze method is a pairwise method. In 2009, there were 2940 valid ballots in total. Each figure represents the number of voters who ranked the candidate at the left better than the candidate at the top. A figure in green represents a victory in that pairwise comparison by the candidate at the left. A figure in red represents a defeat in that pairwise comparison by the candidate at the left:

TC KW SK GM DM TB JH SS DR JGG BB LP AK RP BAS GK KRO RK
Ting Chen 992 1083 1138 1177 1197 1273 1299 1301 1342 1378 1440 1426 1439 1445 1470 1501 1545
Kat Walsh 948 1021 1080 1130 1205 1234 1236 1221 1269 1284 1362 1367 1387 1386 1395 1448 1484
Samuel Klein 799 814 924 987 1059 1055 1080 1080 1126 1163 1216 1219 1224 1244 1247 1313 1348
Gerard Meijssen 803 826 864 930 980 1019 1093 1062 1120 1138 1240 1212 1222 1256 1259 1331 1367
Domas Mituzas 630 643 643 728 878 835 900 868 918 949 1019 1030 1034 1041 1071 1132 1150
Thomas Braun 713 782 812 811 858 895 933 929 956 994 1087 1056 1098 1083 1174 1227 1271
Jussi-Ville Heiskanen 552 571 603 598 647 746 773 742 771 834 907 905 917 918 943 1023 1040
Steve Smith 577 527 543 651 653 749 723 693 763 773 834 846 882 878 910 1006 1010
Dan Rosenthal 506 460 504 618 608 736 714 661 744 750 825 813 873 855 872 965 984
José Gustavo Góngora 504 553 553 576 584 672 632 706 699 732 834 803 840 836 930 975 996
Brady Brim-DeForest 366 359 322 409 415 495 492 466 469 534 629 586 655 644 712 773 794
Lourie Pieterse 370 379 384 415 436 468 459 488 473 478 525 561 597 597 698 782 785
Adam Koenigsberg 309 310 294 351 361 407 407 399 401 443 454 559 557 555 644 725 723
Ralph Potdevin 309 355 358 363 378 363 415 445 457 419 475 546 532 573 663 740 739
Beauford Anton Stenberg 263 283 259 316 320 362 347 342 339 381 379 469 431 475 566 635 653
Gregory Kohs 307 344 308 350 368 389 420 401 407 439 439 512 461 515 517 648 649
Kevin Riley O'Keeffe 287 315 302 337 338 321 359 347 366 381 388 399 401 417 429 503 521
Relly Komaruzaman 152 197 206 207 202 193 220 254 246 207 265 248 274 270 287 418 470

The winners were Chen, Walsh, and Klein, since they pairwise beat every other candidate. Markus Schulze 07:51, 11 June 2011 (UTC)

I consider the Schulze method as a very good one. The only lack is it not being easily understood by everybody. One way to make it easier to understand and easier to use could be an animated list of the candidates names, where the voter can drag&swap the candidates into his preferred ranking, and does not have to count and type numbers. --Trofobi 01:36, 13 June 2011 (UTC)
I agree, this would also provide room to display the candidate information in a separate panel when you click on the candidates which would make voting much easier. I don't know so much about "animated" as much as simple drag and drop though. :) They could all start out in a single bin together (making it obvious that you can tie candidates) and then you could drag and drop candidates into your preferred ranking. --Gmaxwell 08:57, 13 June 2011 (UTC)
Schulze method rules-- we just need the drag-and-drop UI. --Alecmconroy 19:40, 15 June 2011 (UTC)

Editor qualifications[edit]

I think I should be allowed to vote and even run even though I'm blocked on two wikis and have not been editing much. I'm a friend, and the only reason I was blocked is because a few people felt my editing was not good enough. That has nothing to do with my ability to judge the candidates or be a good trustee. I got average grades in high school and college. I've taken public speaking and was in drama club. I think revenue sources are donations, advertising, and government grants (if from coined money) and so forth. I think Wikipedia plans on telling the truth and being well-written, perhaps with the articles checked by named experts. The Executive Director should know about fundraising and advertising, and so forth. My real name is Charles.--Chucky 07:36, 17 May 2011 (UTC)

Eligibility of Capsot[edit]

His talk page says that he is globally blocked. Markus Schulze 19:01, 22 May 2011 (UTC)

He was globally blocked; however, the block was rescinded. Ral315 (talk) 01:46, 23 May 2011 (UTC)
But this is still a block evasion on Meta. Ruslik 09:57, 23 May 2011 (UTC)
In my opinion, the current situation is very problematic. Capsot is still blocked on meta.wikimedia.org, so that he had to use a sockpuppet account (InnaBalaguer) to submit his candidacy. I recommend that Capsot should be unblocked at meta.wikimedia.org at least until the end of this election to make sure that he is not accused of committing a block evasion. Markus Schulze 10:49, 23 May 2011 (UTC)
I unblocked him. --Millosh 17:48, 24 May 2011 (UTC)

Posting on behalf of Capsot[edit]

While blocked he asked me to post this comment. I see Millosh unblocked him a while ago but I think some details may be of interest.--Gomà 18:45, 24 May 2011 (UTC)


Dear Wikimedia people,

Gomà (we are still friends even though I left Amical) was kind enough to inform me of this new discussion about me (I am glad to be the center of so many discussions, it flatters my ego…) and to accept to paste my reply here so you won’t accuse my wife of being a sockpuppet (I can send you her picture if you still think she is a sockpuppet (you can try to reach her/us by Skype, I will write down her/our address if you want to…) or ask her to answer but she only speaks (understands) Ukrainian, Russian and then French to a certain extent, a few words in English or German, but well you should know she might get mad because she is not really glad about the time I spend in the Wikipedia projects and she kindly helped me pasting my translations and then she still has to translate my statements in Ukrainian, so please don’t create more couple tensions than needed… I am afraid she will not accept to help me anymore, she personally chose the picture, I wanted others (I can send them as well and you can tell me if she was right or not…) but well…).

You can also ask Abbas about it all, I had sent him my statement at first (on Friday I guess) but well he told me (on Sunday I guess) he preferred to wait for the notification (and that my wife had beaten him (not physically I hope… well no, she is way too far…)) so I had to find another way and bother my wife… I can also send you the Word files with the translations I worked on (I usually translate directly on the pages without using Word).

I am really glad you all show so much interest in me, however I must bring some unpleasant points forward. I kindly remind you that I was first blocked on the charges of being libelous (“WizardOfOz blocked Capsot from 21:09, 22 March 2011 to infinite; the reason given was: Vandalism: posting libelous information, mail content” ), charge which was discussed by an anonymous user:

“1. If the content of an email can be considered potentially libelous, the responsability lies on the writer of the email, not on the the reproducer (like Julian Assange).2. A disclaimer in an email has no legal effect, being it unilateral and written at the end of the mail, after the main text.--193.145.56.241 18:04, 24 March 2011 (UTC)“

which received the following answer from WizardOfOz:

“Sorry but per Austrian law, where I´m located, there is a law which prohibits providing of correspondence without permission of both sides (and disclaimer clearly confirms that there is no permission). I´m not a OS here on meta, so I just provided the information to meta OS who decided to oversight. Feel free to contact him. --WizardOfOz talk 18:13, 24 March 2011 (UTC)”, should I understand that Austrian rule prevails in the Wikipedia?

Then according to this Austrian law (this is Wikipedia please, aren’t you supposed to bring references?), it would not be libelous but a fault in the fact that there wasn’t permission from both sides, if Austrian law ever was to be contemplated here, obviously… All of this does not seem appropriate to me since there cannot be anything libelous (however I wasn’t unblocked, curiously enough…) when you are not the author of the letter, the guilt would be to make it public when not allowed and that would be another accusation. The letter was actually made public in the Spanish list (http://lists.wikimedia.org.ar/pipermail/wikimedia-es/2011-March/002904.html) as Gomà had already pointed out on March 20th while discussing some issues in the Movement Roles: [1].

I then was blocked in all the projects -without consulting, nor saying anything to, the”local” administrators, is it a usual practice? Shouldn’t they have their say?- with very discussable reasons and clearly going against some (basic?) rules of the Wikimedia world as Sj (I am really grateful of his interventions) reminded Magister Mathematicae (Sj’s talk page: [2] and M & M’s talk page: http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User_talk:Magister_Mathematicae#On_locking_editors).

I had previously promised, but seemingly to no avail, not to create any other secondary/multiple account(s)- you can check the definition of Sockpuppet account in the English Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Sock_puppetry ; I can stand the accusation of having multiple accounts even if it does not seem to be punishable (simply not advisable) or of evading a block; the other charges are in my opinion ungrounded…- and asked to be judged (see DerHexer’s talkpage: [3] or Sj’s talkpage: [4]) but there was not even a single attempt of taking my case into consideration (no reply from WizardOfOz but well I prefer to think that he did not see Sj’s message and that Sj did not pay much attention that the message was not at the end of it all and forgot he had posted the message afterwards (from WizardofOz’s talk page: “That comment states the lock rather than explaining it. We don't usually use locks to resolve social disputes or sockpuppetry among established users - unless this was meant to set a precedent. Was there a discussion about it here on Meta? –SJ talk 01:17, 2 April 2011 (UTC)”.

In spite of it all, I am really grateful and indebted to some honest administrators like DerHexer who did not erase my message (man, the one who erased it erased a proof in what could be a legal procedure, how can it work this way here? Aren’t there guarantees here a devoted user should be judged in a fair, unbiased way? Am I being considered a troll or a vandal in spite of my daily work on the projects? Are the administrators above the laws?).

I think however, as I said in my talk page earlier, that most of the people in the Wikimedia and in Meta are doing their job fine and are honest people; so please, find a solution to my case, I will accept the final sentence if it is based on sound grounds and real debate. Sincerely, de còr e d’òc, Claudi Balaguer/Capsot

PD1: By the way, tell Magister I am not Catalan… nonetheless if he (or anyone else, but not too many otherwise I can’t afford it) is interested in Catalan culture or language (I live in Northern Catalonia), just let me know I can send them some books to learn the language for free.

PD2: I would really appreciate the momentary unblock you were talking about, which would avoid me having to ask/beg/bother other people (I do not like asking favors or being bothersome, except when needed…) to paste my translations or answers, thanks in advance!

Thanks Gomà for kindly pasting my message, sorry if I bothered you. I also want to thank Markus and Millosh publicly. For those my case might interest and interested to witness real interesting debates about my blocks, check the bottom of my User page and WizardofOz's and you will learn very interesting knowledge about the Wikimedia world. Have a nice day, Claudi/Capsot 06:51, 25 May 2011 (UTC)

Candidate needing to fix broken link and one minor edit[edit]

In my candidate statement, an unclear abbreviation (ww for worldwide) was pointed out to me by a question from a translator, and the link to POTD 2009-11-19 is broken because of a lapse in syntax. I would like to make those two simple corrections (plus changing "open-access publications" to open-source papers" to stay within the 1200 character limit), but cannot do so because the page is, understandably, blocked. I would be very grateful if someone on the election committee with the right permissions could help by making those edits for me.Dcrjsr 15:46, 24 May 2011 (UTC)

This has been done. Ral315 (talk) 17:22, 24 May 2011 (UTC)
Thanks so much! Dcrjsr 17:30, 24 May 2011 (UTC)

Add new additions to other languages plesae[edit]

It would be great if someone would add the English text of the recently added requests to other languages, so the translators would be notified and translate them subsequently. Huji 23:52, 24 May 2011 (UTC)

I had tried to send translation requests to the translators-l mailing list, and apparently none went through until earlier today. My apologies for that. Needed translations can be found here; at the moment, our primary focus is the "candidates" and "vote interface (meta)" pages. Ral315 (talk) 20:21, 28 May 2011 (UTC)

You must be logged in to vote[edit]

I followed the vote invite from a logged in session at Enwp and got the ballot screen. Took a while filling out the ballot (it's hard work!) only to be told that I must be logged in to vote. Fortunately I'd saved my ranking first, so I just had reload the page and tediously reenter it. Can we please make the timeout longer? I think it took me an hour to re-review all the candidate statements and Q/A. It's not reasonable to time people out during the vote in the amount of time they would naturally need in order to become informed, especially since the sitenotice for the vote takes people directly into the poll booth. --Gmaxwell 03:12, 29 May 2011 (UTC)

Congratulations on having the foresight to save your rankings first. I didn't and am hesitating before starting the process again. Especially as the login it prompts you to is on a Wiki that isn't part of the universal login. https://wikimedia.amellus.net/index.php?title=Special:UserLogin&returnto=Special:SecurePoll/vote/200 WereSpielChequers 10:32, 29 May 2011 (UTC)

Google translation of the questions to candidates[edit]

Google only translate a portion of the text. Perhaps the pages should be split in shorter ones.--Gomà 12:02, 28 May 2011 (UTC)

Need for a centralized and advertised discussion area[edit]

2011 board elections
Organization

We need to explicitly invite people from diverse projects to discuss the candidates with us here on Meta. Input from other users, especially those from non-enWiki, would be very useful in helping us form a good decision. --Alecmconroy 02:52, 29 May 2011 (UTC) 1}

For example, maybe add a link from the navigation box in Template:Board elections 2011, linking to the appropriate discussion page, as illustrated right.[5] --Alecmconroy 04:02, 29 May 2011 (UTC)
I don't feel that this is something that should be explicitly endorsed. In the past, we've had similar setups (including requiring candidates to require X number of signatures in order to stand, or just having an "endorsements" page). It has always turned out to just be a popularity contest. Ral315 (talk) 19:57, 29 May 2011 (UTC)
Feel what you want-- but if you run an election without any serious, substantial inter-wiki dialogue or debates , your election won't have any legitimacy and neither will the people appointed by the process. Right now, the larger WM community is absent from this election-- if only the wiki-politicos on IRC are allowed to caucus, then we won't have ANY true community representatives on the board anymore.
STOP. Stop for a second and just think about this strategically, people. WMF has had a VERY hard year where they have worked their butts off to try and regain the community's trust.
You cannot have community-trusted elections when IRC discussion is encouraged (for the 'wiki-elites') while ordinary wikimedians are shewed away like flies if they try to start a similar dialogue on-wiki. IRC politicing is all good-- but regular folks on the wiki are a threat?
This isn't a minor issue-- if the status quo of the election were really to continue for the entirety of the election, the resulting candidates may appointed, but they wouldn't have been truly elected by the community.
I know Civility is important, and I hope the discussion will be civil.. But democracy is important too, and we're not living up to our ideals on this. The candidates signed up to have their toes stepped on a little here and there-- it's how humans pick good leaders. We need to create an INVITING culture that is ACTIVELY recruiting the rest of the community to participate in this process.
Right now, this election has a big "GO AWAY" sign written all over it. --Alecmconroy 22:24, 29 May 2011 (UTC)

Voter Guide[edit]

Work in progress of course, but here's my Voter Guide. They're very popular at the EnWiki arbcom elections, there were 24 such guides in the last election. I mostly made it for myself as I try to sort out all the candidates, just to keep things straight in my own mind. But they also help explain to others how you're think, such that they can learn from your thinking (or even change how you're thinking with discussion). --Alecmconroy 02:52, 29 May 2011 (UTC)

Where to vote?[edit]

I think I have found nowhere to vote. There is no banner. I signed off once and in again but got no guidance. Where do you think people know the voting acceptance open and go to SPI site? I'm puzzled ... Or is it just I'm not eligible to vote, whereas I don't think so? --Aphaia 08:01, 29 May 2011 (UTC)

Board_elections/2011#How_to_vote says you have to go to Special:SecurePoll, it work for me. You may be not eligible to vote on some wiki, try on the one where you've been most active recently. Nemo 08:26, 29 May 2011 (UTC)
Thanks, it seems to work for me as a meta editor. It still may remain if it's intuitive enough for many editors, which I'm worried for the sake of turnout. --Aphaia 11:54, 29 May 2011 (UTC)
It didn’t work for me either; I got an invitation on the English site, and the voting site says “Welcome FlashSheridan!”, but both voting and account creation failed. Fortunately, I did save a record of my choices.
FlashSheridan 23:21, 29 May 2011 (UTC)
You do not need to create an account or log in - you are logged in when you click the "go to the secure server" button. You should be able to vote. It's possible that you spent too much time determining who to vote for, and you were inadvertently logged out. Can you try to vote again, and let us know if you have a problem? Ral315 (talk) 00:19, 30 May 2011 (UTC)
That did it, thanks. Silly me, taking time to research and decide before voting :-)
FlashSheridan 02:51, 30 May 2011 (UTC)
Can you please ask the the timeout be increased? Several people have now reported losing their votes because of this (see my comments above)— the system shoves you right into the voting booth when you click the banner, so only after the ballot is loaded will many people do their initial research. --Gmaxwell 03:28, 30 May 2011 (UTC)
I've asked whether this can be done. Ral315 (talk) 06:30, 30 May 2011 (UTC)

One candidate is indefinitely blocked[edit]

Hi! Mischa Vetere was indefinitely blocked on Commons some minutes ago. See the block log on Commons. Does it have any impact on his candidacy? Cassandro 10:39, 29 May 2011 (UTC)

  • The candidate has made legal threats and requested identification of editors see COM:AN/U discussion for the full discussion. I know en:WP policy is very clear about such actions If you must take legal action, we cannot prevent you from doing so. However, it is required that you do not edit Wikipedia until the legal matter has been resolved to ensure that all legal processes happen via proper legal channels. and Commons practice is to defers to en:wp policies where no specific policy exists. While I'm not sure about the extent of a trustees access to information clearly continuation of the candidate calls into doubt this process. for the record I havent voted and wont vote in the election. Gnangarra 01:06, 30 May 2011 (UTC)
It would probably create completely pointless drama to disqualify the candidate now in any case. I'd just recommend adding a fair discussion of this subject to whatever community discussion of the candidate happens and let people make up their own minds on how they plan on voting in light of the available information. --Gmaxwell 02:45, 30 May 2011 (UTC)
Except that the rules clearly state for those standing are the same as voting plus.... for those voting its states not be blocked on the project you are voting from; and User:Mvart4u is block on Commons the project from which he nominated that makes him ineligable. Gnangarra 03:03, 30 May 2011 (UTC)
It's a reasonable interpretation of the rules that you must not be blocked on the project from which you are voting at the time you vote, but if you are blocked later it doesn't matter. I believe thats actually how its enforced today. I would sooner unblock him on commons then allow the wikimedia election to be made into a circus by disqualifying him after the polls opened under some questionable interpretation of an ambiguous rule.--Gmaxwell 03:34, 30 May 2011 (UTC)
This is a situation that we didn't envision when writing the rules. I don't want to speak for the Committee because we're waiting for input from other members, but know that this is under discussion. As of now, he has not been disqualified, and remains a valid candidate. Ral315 (talk) 06:30, 30 May 2011 (UTC)

I don't think that it is feasible to say that Mvart4u's nomination came from commons.wikimedia.org. The provided link rather suggests that his nomination came from meta.wikimedia.org. And Mvart4u is not blocked at meta.wikimedia.org. [However, I recommend that (in future elections) edits from projects, where someone is blocked, should not be counted. In this case, Mvart4u was not eligible, since 706 of his 801 edits are at commons.wikimedia.org.] Markus Schulze 09:51, 30 May 2011 (UTC)

please note the titling === mischa vetere ([[commons:User:mvart4u|mvart4u]])=== the link there to his user page is to Commons, there is no mention of meta activity in his nominations it says Active wikis: Commons and rarely wikipedia . Given the nature of a Trustee and the access to information even if he was basing the nomination on another project its still a significant concern that legal threats have been made with requests for identification of users. As it stands Ral says the committee is discussing the issue given thats not something that was envisioned in the process we should let them investigate and decide how to proceed. Gnangarra 10:24, 30 May 2011 (UTC)
Well, the requirements don't say that you must not be blocked on your home project. Markus Schulze 10:50, 30 May 2011 (UTC)

Because Mischa Vetere was a valid candidate at the start of the election, the Committee has determined that he shall remain a candidate. Ral315 (talk) 16:12, 30 May 2011 (UTC)

I think this is a superior rule going forward, in any case. Without it there may be a continually running political game during an election where parties attempt to get a candidate blocked in order to disqualify them. If the election process can't avoid making a bad choice without the "help" of projects banning candidates during the election then we have bigger problems! :) --Gmaxwell 20:32, 30 May 2011 (UTC)
Thank you Ral for the response the committee has made a reasonable decision under the circumstances. Gnangarra 03:57, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
I don't see why Mischa Vetere should not be eligible. Please explain! The website says that you have to be blocked on more than one project to become ineligible. 217.92.151.70 09:10, 31 May 2011 (UTC)

Is there a page for messages to the Election Committee?[edit]

You want to contact the election committee, but you don't care which member you reach. Is there some central page for such requests, and if not, may I suggest creating one Board Elections/2011/Coordination or some like that. Hat tip to Wikipedia:Talk:Arbitration Committee Elections December 2010/Coordination for the idea of a shared election committee talk page, so that "talking about the election" and "talking to the committee" can be held in separate spaces. --Alecmconroy 14:15, 29 May 2011 (UTC)

please read :) Matanya 14:24, 29 May 2011 (UTC)
You can also reach the election committee on this page. Ral315 (talk) 19:27, 29 May 2011 (UTC)

Confused by Ral's statements[edit]

So, after receiving initially supportive overtures, I spent a good while last night making a template to help with the election:

Nothing controversial about the template-- the formatting was taken from a pre-existing template, adjusting the pages to this setting. Upgraded the formatting obviously, added a call for translators right into the box since we need them so badly. Direct links to the questions and to each of the answer pages. Slightly more invitng names-- "Ask the Candidates" over "Questions".

The point was to try to help create a 'community' here like those we have on so many of the other projects, where there's a robust discussion about the candidates, so that an average wikimedian, who doesn't know people's names, can get info from their peers on the candidates. This has the potential to be mildly incivil to the candidates, but it's absolutely essential if you want anyone who doesn't live on IRC to be able to make a reasoned decision.

My assumption is: "We want all the participation we can get. We want all the questions, all the answers, all the votes, all the discussion, all the rationales that we can possibly get". Widespread voter participation IS a good thing, right?

When my fancy new template was finally done, I was happy to show it off, so I added it to the bottom of a few pages, (or float right on a talk). I smiled, drank some tea, and leaned back. Job well done? Would it help? I dunno, but if it got even one more translator or one more discussion going, that would be a good thing. -- Sadly, my pride was shortlive. Ral315 just went through and removed them all. After taking the time to learn the templating and get the code all right, to see all that time just deleted and wasted is pretty demoralizing, for someone who was trying to volunteer to help out with the election by doing boring template work.

I'm even more confused that by Ral's allusion that discussion might somehow turn this election to turn into a popularity contest-- thus we shouldn't promote discussion...??? Am I crazy? Isn't that the whole point of having an election-- for people to get together and discuss the candidates, and then decide which candidate is most popular. I've never heard of the "try to avoid talking amongst yourselves" model of elections.

If we continue to by discouraging discussion or actively choosing not to promote debate, then we'll get get exactly what we're seeing here-- the potential makings of a failed election:

  • Voting has begun. Board Member is the most important position we have-- and there are still less than 20 questions?
  • Voting has begun. It's our most important election, and there's still no active on-wiki debate that I can find??
  • Voting has begun. A board member is supposed to represent the global community of editors, and yet, translations still aren't done midway into the elections?
  • Last year there were only a paltry few thousand votes cast-- a few thousand out of a community as large as WM?

If we keep up this level of 'community outreach", we might break last year's numbers by a few hundred and get even fewer voters this year!

The lack of robust discussion is becoming a real problem. If you have an election and most of your organization doesn't turn up, your organization's governance WILL be sub-optimally selected, the leaders will lose legitimacy, and continued into the future, this low participation could eventually lead entire WMF organization to lose some of its legitimacy.

Sorry for the rant-- been up 36 hours banging my head against a wall trying to figure out how to foster a "real, robust discussion" going here on this election, and was just told that my time was mostly wasted time because we don't want to discuss the candidates lest a POPULAR election devolve into a popularity contest? Most disappointed and confused.--Alecmconroy 20:15, 29 May 2011 (UTC)

My understanding was that the Election Committee reached decisions jointly. Alec, you should ask the Committee to confirm Ral's actions, because I do not see how he had the authority to do this unilaterally. AGK 20:04, 4 June 2011 (UTC)
A nice template. Something like that could be standard in future elections [not only for the Board election]. SJ talk | translate   04:20, 20 June 2011 (UTC)

Let's clear this up: What's our stance on discussion? Good or bad?[edit]

  • Is there anyone here who thinks we SHOULDN'T be doing as much as possible to reach out to the wider community and foster robust, even energized, discussion?
  • Is our low participation a PROBLEM? or is our 'enthusiasm problem' actually by design? --Alecmconroy 20:51, 29 May 2011 (UTC)


I'd like to say a sincere word of thanks to all the people who have contacted me since this was posted. Based on that, I strongly feel our lack of global voter engagement is, in fact, entirely unintentional and undesired. I apologize for even considering the alternative. If I'm not able to be as active in discussion in the coming week as I'd like, it is _entirely_ because of real life commitments, not at all attributable to the any of the concerns expressed above.
If only every day was memorial day weekend. :) --Alecmconroy 20:03, 30 May 2011 (UTC)
If you want more participation the best way would be to post something to the various noticeboards; a lot of people ignore the central noticeboard. But a post to the Administrators Noticeboard and Village Pump on English Wikipedia would get noticed. I don't know about other Wiki's, but I imagine it is the same --ErrantX 08:21, 1 June 2011 (UTC)

Candidates look like Brežnev[edit]

See also Wikimedia_meetings/2011-06-04

To quote a well known Italian political satirist, candidates currently look like Brežnev, and the current (very little) discussion about board platform seems a starchy party political broadcast directly from the monopolistic state-owned Italian TV of the 70s: it's not surprising that we have currently few votes and little activity. We want a 21st century election campaign: discussions everywhere, candidates who excite the electorate about the usefulness of the WMF board, of the board election and of their platform; heated debates between the candidates; new communications ideas from the candidates; etc. This is not a request for adminship.
I think that candidates should take the initiative (especially most prominent ones and former board members; I'll also post something on Talk:Wikimedia board manual about this), but perhaps the election committee could help by stating the obvious (or not so obvious), for instance that it's ok to talk about candidates and platforms in public places such talk pages, user subpages, village pumps, blogs etc.; that candidates who engage in public discussion are welcome (unless they spam user talks), or similar things. Nemo 10:52, 5 June 2011 (UTC)

I agree that a discussion on the contents would be useful - but the current environment is not very inviting for that. The infrastructure that has been built is mainly Question & Answer, not even allowing to return on an answer as the one who put the question out. Also with a small board of ten (and only three community selected board members) I feel a little held back because if elected, you have to work with the others, so making the discussion personal (you are not good for the job, and you are) is imho definitely not a wise thing to do in that respect.
I however also think that it is more important that people get an idea of the work the board does in a more continuous way. We should not wait until elections to have discussions, people should be involved from day one and throughout the time. This used to be more the case in the past (I recall Florence writing several discussion pieces on foundation-l as a board chair) than currently, and could use improvement. Effeietsanders 11:19, 5 June 2011 (UTC) p.s.: Maybe we (I?) should also revisit our photographs if we (I?) look like Breznev...

I agree with Nemo that more life inside of the elections is needed. I tried to make a kind of blog-debate with one of the candidates, but he doesn't want that. Basically, if candidates don't have to discuss, it seems that they would prefer not to discuss at all. Because of that, it's a job for voters: you should force candidates to stand behind their positions, to keep political process alive between the elections and remind elected candidates why they were elected. If public is not interested in political process, candidates and especially elected ones are not interested in it by default. (I am, but you shouldn't count on my personal attributes in political process; you should force candidates to behave like that.) --Millosh 11:29, 5 June 2011 (UTC)

Besides the fact that that he supports me, I really appreciate Alecmconroy's work toward making elections closer to political process. Note that this election is the first one with such kind of public involvement. And I hope that it would be greater in two years. But, again, it is voters' job, not the job of candidates because reasons above. --Millosh 11:29, 5 June 2011 (UTC)

Besides the fact that he doesn't support me I also appreciate his work and support his efforts to give it visibility. But I have to say that it is a bit disappointing that after taking the time to answer his extra questions he only recommend candidates who have not answered them. Except for your case. And he doesn't put even a single link to those extra questions/answers in his voters guide.--Gomà 15:47, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
He is doing two separate things: (1) promoting candidates which he thinks that are the best, which is his [personal] political opinion; and (2) working toward involving others in the political process; for example, he brought AGK (who, BTW, supports you ;) ). I think that the second thing is more important. --Millosh
Goma-- I'm so sorry for the confusion-- my voter guide is NOT done. not done at all. I'm so sorry that you felt I had been disrespectful of the time you took to answer the optional questions. If you'll notice, I have not added my own guide to the Template:Board_elections_2011_infobox, because it's not done yet. (also, waiting on more guides).
The truth is that it's _very_ difficult to evaluate people who aren't already serving at the movement level. If you work primarily on a local project, I need to hear from people in your community. Right now, that's not happening, and so you're essentially impossible to evaluate.
For nearly all voters, "essentially impossible to evaluate" candidates will probably become "default weak opposes"-- regardless of the quality of the actual candidate. I'm trying hard to push back against that trend, to be an exception to that rule, and to really evaluate everyone individually-- I'm just nowhere near done.
Mostly, right now I'm focusing on trying to get more feedback from others. My opinion isn't necessarily better than anyone else's opinion. A single voter guide may or may not be useful-- it's a diverse collection of voter guides that are incredibly useful and make for "smarter" elections.
--Alecmconroy 04:54, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
Also-- I just double checked. There is actually a link to the extra questions on the vote guide draft as part of the 20111 Board Election Infobox I created, but if there's somewhere else in the document that you expected a link, just be bold and add one. The extra questions were great, I love linking to them. --Alecmconroy 05:16, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
If anything politics is the one thing we do not need at the Wikimedia Foundation. We need capable thoughtful people. We do not need candidates riding into town on a motorcycle because it looks hip. We do not need posturing for our community and hiding when elected. Thanks, GerardM 18:08, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
I agree with Gerard - politics is a problematic factor in many issues within our communities, people labelling each other in opposition to themselves rather than focussing on what unites us. That said, I'm very much in favour of more questioning of potential Board candidates (myself included). This process has resulted in quite a bland election so far, and though I worry about changing it mid-way through, we should do as much as we can to ensure that the community get every opportunity to understand the choices available to them.
James F. (talk) 19:12, 5 June 2011 (UTC)
Political life is usual thing among any group of homo sapiens. Expressing opinion toward something inside of some group is political. --Millosh 04:55, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
I think there are some parts of "Real Wold Politics" that we very much don't want-- the negative emotions, divisiveness, etc. "Politics" in the narrow context of a foundation election really just means "Community Engagement in Foundation Leadership", which is a great thing. We shouldn't let the 'dirtiness' of the word 'politics' contaminate an important goal. --Alecmconroy 05:03, 6 June 2011 (UTC)

┌─────────────────────────────────┘
Speaking for myself, the wording of the election text generally put me off advocating or discussing the election too much - at least on English Wikipedia the idea of canvassing for votes or opinions is frowned on quite heavily, and the wording of the election description seemed to imply a similar approach. I mean, I wanted to post a longer description of why I am standing my user page (I may still do so), but thought it might be frowned on. I'd also love to try and drag in editors from my home wiki to contribute to the discussion/questioning - but I don't want to look as if I am canvassing for votes (not that I am big headed enough to think that posting to my home wiki would improve my chances of being elected :)). What would be nice is a group of editors whose task is to take the election to the various Wiki's, posting notes on the major noticeboard, answering questions and pushing people to become involved. --ErrantX 14:33, 6 June 2011 (UTC)

A Missed Opportunity[edit]

One of the "big vision" ideas that inspires Wikimedia is that thought that we are building the first truly global community. Wikimedia projects are a wonder of the world, a "Great Pyramid" built by altruistic volunteers from all over our planet.

A lot has changed since the last such election in 2009. Global outreach has become an increasingly major focus of our movement. We are actively seeking ways to engage the global community in Wikimedia.

This election could be an opportunity--- a chance to being forging a single,unified truly-global community (as opposed to the mere 'collections of individual project communities'. We want to engage our WHOLE community, and this is the moment.

Starting to build that global community is a positive thing in itself. We need more communication inter-project, inter-language, inter-national, and inter-cultural. I think we could be doing a lot more.

So for example?

Have _any_ non-english speakers had an opportunity to ask questions of all the candidates? Or are they limited to the 1200 letter bios?

Questions are great. Not only do they help people understand the candidates, but they help us understand the candidates as people, not profiles. This is a Good Thing.

Case in point-- We have some great diversity here in the candidates. To highlight a few examples:

  • One candidate is from Israel-- Arabic-language Wikimedians should get an extensive chance to interact with him during the election, so they can see what virtually all english-speakers know by now-- Israeli just means 'Person living in Israel'. No more, no less.
  • Similarly, one candidate is from the Balkans, a region of the world whose very name is synonymous with sectarian dispute. I want our global community to get to interact with this person as a person.
  • Another candidate mentions a same-sex romantic relationship in English questions, and the #1 way to overcome anti-gay bigotry is positive direct interaction with someone, and seeing the person as a person. I want our global community to get to have that positive experience, if they haven't already.

I could go on and on about each of the candidate's unique demographics and what they each bring to the table. People from a variety of professions, backgrounds, and nations have stepped up to offer to help lead us. They're putting themselves out there in a big way, making us a huge offer to do a lot of work for free. The election is a positive, amazing thing, and we should be making the most of it.

Our global community, the wider community, needs to have the experience of participating in this election. It may not change the outcomes one iota, but the mere act of participation is itself a positive force. People who vote will be more likely to contribute to the projects, more likely to donate, more likely to feel 'invested' in the foundation and the movement. Voters without English fluency would _especially_ benefit from greater engagement with the board candidates, as those individuals in practice have much less access to the board than speakers of English.

In short, we need to make global voter participation a priority and a goal, in and of itself. --Alecmconroy 04:29, 6 June 2011 (UTC)

+1. I certainly agree with this; it is difficult to make the board/foundation/process seem relevant to the communities, and this is one easy way to participate; it's also an opportunity to help people learn about Wikimedia governance in general. And yes, re: the diversity of candidates; I am privileged to personally know many of the candidates running this year, and they are amazing people that deserve to be highlighted in their own right. -- phoebe | talk 17:11, 7 June 2011 (UTC)
+1. I think the votes should not begin until the presentation of candidates and the answers are translated at least to the ten major languages​​. --Fajro 17:25, 7 June 2011 (UTC)
+1. I would like to see this become a primary metric for future elections: good discussion, a sense of involvement in process and something central to the future of the Foundation, and a strong sense of being welcomed as an individual and welcome to talk and debate. SJ talk | translate   04:05, 20 June 2011 (UTC)
For example: we could have an extra two weeks just for discussion and debates, an interface for elections as beautiful as that used for the POTY voting on Commons. we could ask for election-season ambassadors (or simply revitalize and use the embassy framework), and support an election-season section of local Village Pumps for this sort of discussion. People who are not eligible to vote are still eligible to partake in every other part of the election process - from nominating candidates to asking questions and participating in discussion - and should feel welcome to do so. SJ talk | translate  

Agreed, although I think that I will get similar percentages of votes from all communities of former Yugoslavia. (To be clear: I agree with the extension of elections.) Very important issue is that election turnout is very very low. If we have ~20,000 very active users and count that it is a number of voters (some very active are not eligible, but many active users are), turnout on last elections was ~15%. That's very low even for societies where voters are apathetic toward political process. Such percentages are usual just in societies where ~2/3 of voters are boycotting elections. --Millosh 19:19, 7 June 2011 (UTC)

I think that the process of electing Board members shouldn't be just a couple of months before the elections, but all of the time. In other words, it would be good to have permanent Election committee, which would care about letting people know what are their rights and why it is important to participate in elections, but in all other issues related to Wikimedia movement: Strategy planning, Movement roles etc. I would like to have statistics of turnout per project and per country, which would give us a guide: what should be done where. --Millosh 19:19, 7 June 2011 (UTC)

As I wrote elsewhere more than once, the board elections have a low turnout and are met with apathy in most projects because people just don't care about the board, don't know what the board does, don't know who sits on the board, don't know how the board affects their wikimedian lives, don't know any of the candidates, or think that the outcome of the elections will not change whatever they do. These are deep-seated facts and I don't see how they'll suddenly change. 99% of wikimedians will care a LOT about the identity of their local admins, but couldn't care less about the composition of the board. The board is for hard-core WMF geeks. I'll admit I don't have any magical ideas about how to change that. I like Alec's ideas and motivation, but I'm afraid it won't make much of a change. Most people will just tell you they don't give a damn even if you call them up on the phone and persuade them to vote (not that I'm suggesting you do that...). Harel 19:30, 7 June 2011 (UTC)
for now: i wouldn't say that we need to have a permanent formal body but that depends on the real structure. what really needs hammering is our approach of getting out to the projects on this topic generally. what we have seen so far, on meta, works more or less on a basic level - which means that we managed to provide all stuff in time in english here on meta - but what we failed to provide in advance is going out and say what this is all about. why should you care about something you know virtually nothing about and our little global/meta/back stage game falls very well into this category. we often tend to forget this last point over all the specialized paperwork, committees and organizational debates. in practice:
we had a - lovely - article in the current signpost, thx to phoebe, and HaeB informed in the short notes before that. i wrote a rather technocratic note (i have to confess) for the german counterpart in time (-> may, 29.) but (as far as i checked) we didn't even got basic information out to all major projects, like es.wp, in time (but es.wp came up with a pretty cool template june, 06.)
if we really want to tackle the multi-language/cosmopolitan aspect in practice, we should start there, because 1) it can be prepared & done (long & locally) in advance, 2) doesn't need a complete reengeneering every time, 3) it is more likely to raise the necessary attention outside of "meta" and 4) maybe we even get more activity regarding translations of questions, etc. down the road as soon as people can orient themselves, regards --Jan eissfeldt 20:48, 7 June 2011 (UTC)
thanks Jan :) BTW the article is here; if anyone would like to translate it please feel free. -- phoebe | talk 22:12, 7 June 2011 (UTC)

Template:Other languages[edit]

Please modify the Template:Other languages, so that it can handle up to 80 languages. Markus Schulze 19:29, 8 June 2011 (UTC)

Done.
James F. (talk) 21:12, 9 June 2011 (UTC)
no chinese editions display,please modify that, see http://meta.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?title=Board_elections/2011/Candidates/en&uselang=en --Vipuser 00:58, 10 June 2011 (UTC)

Email[edit]

Good initiative to send out the emails.

Some suggestions for an email next time:

  • Mention that the elections are actually being held. Not just "you are eligible to vote". If I wouldn't know better, I would just ignore the email (ok, nice to know) and wait for the actual call for votes.
  • Add the relevant dates - how many days to go? Give a sense of urgency.
  • Mention the number of candidates and where to vote.
  • "Input in selection" is not the same as "your vote". It suggests that it is not yet the voting phase.
  • Mention that they can change their vote until the vote closes. That should lower the threshold to "give a temporary vote".

I hope that is useful. Effeietsanders 12:05, 10 June 2011 (UTC)

Hi, also my email subject said "Wikimedia Foundation Elections 2009". The Helpful One 12:06, 10 June 2011 (UTC)
Yeah, now you mention it... Effeietsanders 12:24, 10 June 2011 (UTC)
Eia is right. With regard to the input, there's no translation for input so the Italian text was better. :-D I'll add two obvious points:
  • Keep recognize the home wiki and language in that way, seems to have worked well (perhaps store the script somewhere on wikitech).
  • Translate soon or you'll be forced to use the old text.
And two more difficult ones:
  • Link some place where people can discuss about the candidates and so on and invite them to do so. A mailing list in their language, a specific page on Meta, a village pump in their language (but you would need to open such discussions and it would seem Wikipedia-centric)...
  • Send HTML emails for RTL languages (see foundation-l).
Nemo 12:46, 10 June 2011 (UTC)
2009? Well done guys, really well done! Craig Franklin 12:53, 10 June 2011 (UTC).
That's the kind of mistakes that can happen with mass e-mails. No need to be cynical. Harel 14:49, 10 June 2011 (UTC)
Yes, but three errors?
  • The timewarp problem (ie: the emails all seemed to say 2009)
  • The fact that my bot also got an invitation to vote.
  • The fact that I've already voted but got an invitation to vote anyway.
I don't think it's unreasonable to ask that when we're sending out email to what must be tens of thousands of people, that a little bit of thought or proofreading goes into it. Craig Franklin 04:03, 11 June 2011 (UTC).
I too was rather mystified to receive an email about elections in 2009. But even stranger was to receive this invitation to vote, several days AFTER I already voted. Emails should only go to users who haven't already voted; or even better should be sent out when voting opens, at which point no-one has voted yet. Modest Genius 16:07, 10 June 2011 (UTC)
Besides the 2009 in the title, the fact i already voted for 2011 (which got me a bit scared that my vote was actually not accounted for), and the clumsy wording, the email (in French) started with "{{GENDER:(:Julien:)|Cher|Chère|Cher/Chère}} (:Julien:)": magic word has lost its magic! And i also had "<i>in fine</i>" within the text. (:Julien:) 09:46, 11 June 2011 (UTC)
I’ve posted a similar remark as (:Julien:) on the French discussion page, see http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Talk:Board_elections/2011/fr for more details about the notified errors. With hope it will be fixed for next elections… MetalGearLiquid 09:04, 12 June 2011 (UTC)

Elections Committee mailing: Time Warp[edit]

FYI – I received a mass email this morning from "Wikimedia Board Elections Committee" (board-elections<at>lists.wikimedia<dot>org) bearing the following subject line: "Wikimedia Foundation Elections 2009" [emphasis added]. ~ Ningauble 17:06, 10 June 2011 (UTC)

Ditto. I'm sure there are plenty of others with the same... Peter 18:22, 10 June 2011 (UTC)
That was an unfortunate error, but the message hopefully got across nonetheless. :-) Jon Harald Søby 21:24, 10 June 2011 (UTC)

html in plain text email[edit]

The board election emails, at least in the fa translation contain <div style="{{quote style|text-align=right}} direction:rtl;">. The emails are sent as plain text. Including html is not going to work (Also apparently templates aren't expanded). Bawolff 18:09, 10 June 2011 (UTC)

Spam[edit]

Hi. I apologyze for my bad english. Since a couple of days I'm trying to explain PromoteElection2011 a couple of things. To begining with, it´s clear the name of the user is inapropiated. Pleople says if it're editing articles could be a single purpose account, but "it's doing nothing wrong...". Well, that´s not true: it's doing spam. The board says "add this board to any page", "recruit", "share", "promote". In others situation, with other actors, this could be a clear spam, no question, speedy deletion but... it comes from WMF. Or at least that is what local communities think. As I explain before, WM Argentina and WP Spain does not recognize the account as a part of WMF. The board has now request for deletion in a couple of projects. Anyway, after election will by completely useless. However, the problem goes far.

Here is not only the text, wich is very promotional, but also the crosswiki spam is use for. I understand it´s a very common attitud for en:WP to do this kind of stuff, but not in other languages or projects. It´s unconfortable and not very polite someone who doesn´t speek the lenguage, has 0 contribution in it, and come with a bad translated, giant, spammer, not-requested and mostly not-wanted board (or template, in this case). No one ake one second to ask for the routines in other projects, and this only shows your low understanding of other cultures. Worst is, now you're doing spam mailing everybody. I added my mail to the "nomail list", of course, but does not deminis the fact that ... is spam, anyway.

I understand you need to "promote your election", but these such be not good ideas. The board on any page of any WP is very well visible, as the one to ask for money. It seems more there is no interest to vote. Maybe the solution is not an agressive campaing a couple of days before elections, but a real campaing working, showing candidats actually doing something for communities, getting involve, developing confidance. Is not enough with a board a month a year, but go to the different Caffes (let's say once a month if once a week is too many work) and ask them what they need, what they think, show them that you actually exist, care, listen to their needs and fix them. Work, is the best campaing you certainly can make. Who's wonna vote if has any idea of who the hell are the candidates? --Andreateletrabajo 12:54, 10 June 2011 (UTC)

Maybe the best is contact with local WMmembers and ask them to help you to communicate your ideas, but is not good when someone whoi not know the community try to force something. Cheers, --Andreateletrabajo 12:57, 10 June 2011 (UTC)
I would like to make clear that the PromoteElection2011 account is not an official Election Committee initiative. We of course appreciate that people want to help promoting the election, but it would be better to do it through proper channels instead of single-purpose accounts. Jon Harald Søby 21:26, 10 June 2011 (UTC)
My sincere apologies again to all for the negative response to "PromoteElection2011". A lot of lessons have been learned, most notably that we should plan ahead for community engagement, that interwiki transclusion would be good, linking instead of transcluding on VPs is good. The SPA account cloaking was important to avoid canvassing my own opinions and views (having already written a voter guide of my own and publicized it), but a username should have been something even more clearly unofficial. There are more lessons to be learned, I'm sure. Just rest assured that the posts to the VPs are all done, it was an attempt to be bold to generate a discussion, but not a particularly successful attempt, it seems. --Alecmconroy 14:49, 11 June 2011 (UTC)

GPG Key[edit]

Hi, On the help list there is no explanation what to with the PGP Message which is returned by the voting server. Especially i could not find the Key on my keyserver Arved 15:06, 10 June 2011 (UTC)

It's not a key but a signature. I guess you can verify it using a PGP public key (which I don't know where you can obtain). Harel 16:26, 10 June 2011 (UTC)

How many votes?[edit]

How about adding the number of open seats to the How to Vote section? It took me several passes to spot "elect three candidates" in the header, since the top of the page is so busy with announcements and translation links. Changing "decide which candidates" to "decide which three candidates" would make it instantly clear. Not R 16:17, 10 June 2011 (UTC)

No, because you can vote for as many candidates as you'd like. We use the Schulze method, which means that you rank the candidates in the order you prefer them. It should be explained pretty clearly on the election page, but suggestions for improvements are always welcome. Jon Harald Søby 21:28, 10 June 2011 (UTC)
Oh. In that case, "decide which candidates" is just plain wrong. The explanation in the introduction is clear enough, but buried in dense information in a visually busy section. The instructions for voters could say something like:
  1. Read the candidate presentations and decide on your ranking of the candidates. You will be electing candidates to three seats on the board, but you are asked to rank all the candidates in order of preference.
  2. Go to the wiki page "Special:Securepoll" etc.
  3. Follow the instructions on that page to enter your ranking of the candidates.
It would also be good if the last step indicated whether the voter could log in to see the instructions, and then log in again later to enter his votes. If I had been certain I could log in again later, I might have just gone straight to the poll instructions instead of wasting time poking through this article, and then had time to review the candidate statements and actually vote (I didn't receive notice of the election until Friday). Not R 14:42, 13 June 2011 (UTC)

Winner take all vs. proportional voting[edit]

The Schulze method is a very defensible voting method to use when electing one person, but it's too bad that a winner-take-all is used to elect three seats. Although unlikely, it means that 49% of voters might strongly disagree with the views of the winners. Many NGO's use voting methods where about a third voters could have the power to elect one of three seats. (By the way, my usual login doesn't seem to work on this page... I'm RRichie)

Actually, there is also a proportional variant of the Schulze method. I have applied this variant to the ballot data of the 2008 Board of Trustees elections. Here is the result:
one seat: Chen
two seats: Bakharev Chen
three seats: Bakharev Chen Klein
four seats: Bakharev Cain Chen Klein
five seats: Bakharev Cain Chen Klein Postlethwaite
six seats: Bakharev Cain Chen Huikeshoven Klein Postlethwaite
seven seats: Bakharev Cain Chen Huikeshoven Klein Postlethwaite Smith
eight seats: Bakharev Cain Chen Huikeshoven Klein Postlethwaite Saintonge Smith
nine seats: Bakharev Cain Chen Heiskanen Huikeshoven Klein Postlethwaite Saintonge Smith
ten seats: Bakharev Cain Chen Heiskanen Huikeshoven Klein Postlethwaite Saintonge Smith Weber
eleven seats: Bakharev Cain Chen Heiskanen Huikeshoven Klein Postlethwaite Rosenthal Saintonge Smith Weber
twelve seats: Bakharev Cain Chen Heiskanen Huikeshoven Klein Kohs Postlethwaite Rosenthal Saintonge Smith Weber
thirteen seats: Bakharev Cain Chen Heiskanen Huikeshoven Klein Kohs Postlethwaite Rosenthal Saintonge Smith Spurrier Weber
fourteen seats: Bakharev Bisanz Cain Chen Heiskanen Huikeshoven Klein Kohs Postlethwaite Rosenthal Saintonge Smith Spurrier Weber
Markus Schulze 07:26, 11 June 2011 (UTC)

Error[edit]

I've spent the last two hours evaluating the candidates. When I tried to vote, I got this error message:

"You've not been recognized by the system. Make sure that you've followed the instructions on How to vote page and that you've enabled cookies for this domain."

I made sure that I had followed the instructions and that my browser accepts cookies, but I still got the same error. I give up. A waste of time. — AdiJapan 10:07, 11 June 2011 (UTC)

I tried again today several times and eventually it worked. I still don't know what was wrong, because I didn't change anything. I wonder how many voters actually give up on the first attempt. — AdiJapan 04:02, 12 June 2011 (UTC)

I also had this error, after spending a lot of time looking through the candidates statements etc. I did try again and it worked, with no difference except less time elapsed between visiting voting page and submitting it. If there is a time-out this should be stated so people can make note of their votes elsewhere while deciding. Peter 20:48, 12 June 2011 (UTC)

Prolongation of Voting Period[edit]

I recommend that the voting period should be prolonged by one week, simply because the notification email came so late. Markus Schulze 14:12, 11 June 2011 (UTC)

I tend to concur-- there have been a lot of random unforeseen delays and glitches which add up to very low voter engagement.
Real world politics have real world poll workers who have to close the polls to go home to their real world families. Our poll worker is a computer that won't be inconvenienced by keeping the election open. If people are still trying to come in to vote, let's slam the door shut on them. --Alecmconroy 14:39, 11 June 2011 (UTC)

I am very, very strongly opposed to this idea. One of the basic rules of a voting system is that you must never change the rules mid-stream, even if that change is seemingly innocuous or "obviously" beneficial, because it affects the perception of fairness regardless of the outcome.

It must never be seen possible that the change was made to favor one candidate over another, or that there was some nefarious purpose to it — and with a remote election where no surveillance can be made in person, the only way to have that trust is to have confidence in the system itself. Any change once the election has started destroys that confidence. — Coren (talk) / (en-wiki) 15:05, 11 June 2011 (UTC)

Personally, I am for prolongation of election, but I agree with Coren's arguments. Questions opened during this election should be addressed at the next one. --Millosh 15:42, 11 June 2011 (UTC)
Oh, yes! I agree that the timeline for the next election needs to be revised; to give more time for better translations, to increase earlier involvement of the electorate, and to encourage more discussion of and with the candidates. In fact, translation to the "big" languages is so important that I think the foundation should arrange for translation to have professional help as needed. — Coren (talk) / (en-wiki) 16:23, 11 June 2011 (UTC)
I disagree. Extend the voting period is not to change the rules. "it affects the perception of fairness regardless of the outcome" Yeah, that makes it more fair! "It must never be seen possible that the change was made to favor one candidate over another" Then, not extending the voting period will be seen as an attempt to benefit the candidates that the majority do not want to vote. --Fajro 17:10, 11 June 2011 (UTC)
In my opinion, the page view statistics are very intriguing. Markus Schulze 17:30, 11 June 2011 (UTC)
They demonstrate that the reminder email had a very visible and significant effect, methinks. All the more reason to think about those things earlier come next election. — Coren (talk) / (en-wiki) 17:40, 11 June 2011 (UTC)
If the voting statistics look like the pageview statistics, we must hold the election open. The people I talked to outside of meta often had little clue what the elections were or why they mattered. The email seems to have solved this for some of the people who read it. --Alecmconroy 04:14, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
  • I don't have an opinion one way or another about whether voting should be prolonged -- it seems like that would be the case if there were significant problems that may have prevented people from voting, and that's the elections committee's job to point out -- but I will point out that the timeline isn't random: we want the new or reelected board members to attend the board meeting at Wikimania (this year the first week in August, but sometimes in July), and there needs to be time to buy plane tickets etc. There was also some thought that having a more regular schedule would be beneficial, i.e. always having elections and chapter selection happen in June. Just something to keep in mind. -- phoebe | talk 03:31, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
I agree a lot of care has to be taken in making sure extension is completely non-partisan, as Coren mentions. I feel like any of the following groups would have the authority to declare an extension. The election committee are the first line of defense in ensuring the election is fair and orderly, so it's their job first and foremost to extend. Similarly, the non-candidate board members should collectively call for an extension if they think it would make the election more fair. Additionally, a strongly-voiced consensus of the community or a VERY very strong consensus of the candidates could also give an extension a mandate, but neither of those two seem likely. I'd say it's up to the election committee and the non-candidate board.
I don't think anyone has any clue how an extension would affect the outcome, or at least, I can't predict how it would affect it. I think most of our hopes aren't so much that it will affect the chose of candidates, but more that it will affect the voters themselves, getting them to "cast their lot" with the foundation. Right now, whoever wins, I was a part of the process to help pick them, and they'll be 'my' board member regardless of where they were in my individual preferences. I think most people will feel the same way, if given the chance.
Do we have a day by day chart of how many voters we're getting? More importantly, do the election committee and the board have access to it? That's how you pragmatically make the decision of extension, I think. Ask: Is the number of people who voted in the last days a significant fraction of the total votes? If we held a fair election and alerted everyone in a timely fashion, then most everyone should have voted. If the votes coming in are still a significant fraction of the total votes, then a significant fraction of the community is still voting. --Alecmconroy 04:10, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
I've made the list of "attention beneficiaries", although I don't think that it is quite accurate in relation to gains in election. (I don't think that mvart4u would benefit from the best attention.) --Millosh 04:57, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
Additionally, it occurs to me that there is one group of people who could also extend voting-- the candidates who win if voting is not extended. Namely, as voting ends, keep collecting but don't include in the tally. Unanimous consent of the elected candidate to forgo immediate appointment in favor of extending the period of time for additional voting. If their identities were announced and it was announced they agreed to it, I suspect the rest of voters would solidify around the three candidates who agreed to extend voting.
Huge risk though. It'd be infinitely better for election committee or the uninvolved board or staff to make that call. --Alecmconroy 05:47, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
I see the reason behind both sides' arguments. In the Israeli electoral system, for example, if people are lined up outside of a ballot and the preplanned voting period ends, it is extended to allow all those in the line to vote, as long as it takes, even if other ballots have been closed already and counting has begun. Likewise, if there are unforeseen circumstances (extreme weather, for example), the Board of Elections might decide to prolong the vote. This is not perceived as favoring anyone. And that's for a real-world country where matters of life and death matter. Our Board of Trustees might be very important indeed, but it's still not about running a country. I think in the end we can prolong the vote by a few days, if that's the unanimous decision of the Elections Committee. Harel 05:38, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
I'd be inclined to say that if the election committee isn't unanimous either way, the decision should just get kicked up to the uninvolved board members.
In the outside community, there's a prevalent view that election-committee-personified doesn't care who participates or even if they participate. For example, here's a not atypical comment froma total stranger who had trouble voting, tried to get in touch with the elections committee, but never got a response:
"I'm just a guy, possibly on the other side of the world, so nobody actually cares if I can vote, especially not the organizers (see, no one has answered my complaint yet)." diff
Once you actually talk to the organizers, you quickly see that this isn't the case. They're not disinterested (and definitely not anti-engagement)-- they're just humans who are massively overworked. The last EnWiki election had 17 election coordinators, 3 election admins, four steward scrutineers, a WMF developer, a five-article series in the Signpost, and 24 voter guides-- all for one project one language.
We have but a handful of election coordinators-- and they have infinitely more work facing them than their EnWiki counterparts. Our community is multi-lingual and truly global. Everything must be translated, and the community can't 'talk to itself' the way we can on a single-language project. For whole swaths of these communities, this is their first foundation-level election. They don't know what the board does, they don't know why they should care-- kinda like if the ISP that hosts your website asked you to 'vote' on their company's leadership-- "Why should I care who runs my ISP? If they're bad, I'll just change hosting companies."
In short, whereas the EnWiki coordinators and admins inherited a highly energized project community, we've had to actually do the community-building work to create a global community invested in the foundation. More than anything, that's what's at the heart of the unforeseen delays and difficulties we've encountered, I think. --Alecmconroy 06:18, 12 June 2011 (UTC)

Number of cast ballots:
29 May 2011: 442
30 May 2011: 211
31 May 2011: 127
1 June 2011: 109
2 June 2011: 91
3 June 2011: 64
4 June 2011: 64
5 June 2011: 126
6 June 2011: 97
7 June 2011: 119
8 June 2011: 95
9 June 2011: 106
10 June 2011: 1022
11 June 2011: 452
12 June 2011: 370
—The preceding unsigned comment was added by MarkusSchulze (talk)

So, 47% of our votes were received in the last 2 days? If so, I'd definitely call ~1/2 a significant fraction. --Alecmconroy 08:53, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose Oppose to prolonged voting period. People received the mail a few days ago, granted most people check it within 24 hours most should be ok with voting. It would be difficult for the candidates to wait the additional hours after they have been expecting the outcome for probably a few weeks. -Gryllida 12:29, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
  • Support extension. the table above is indicative that that the prolongation will make it appear fairer. Contrary to what was said just above, many people do not check email every 24 hours during a weekend. Contrary to what was said further above, it's normal in the US for a court to extent a voting period when there's been technical problems or the perception of them. People who intend to vote do not like not having a chance to do so. DGG 21:01, 12 June 2011 (UTC)

STRONGLY SUPPORT EXTENDING ELECTION: I just tried to vote and I recieved this message: "The election ended 12 June 2011. No more votes will be accepted. The results will be announced on 15 June 2011." I tried to vote for: 1-Kat Walsh (mindspillage); 2-Claudi Balaguer (Capsot); 3-James Forrester (Jdforrester). Please include my vote in the election. 5:34 PM, Pacific Time Zone, 12June2011 Citizen-of-wiki 00:36, 13 June 2011 (UTC)

  • I don't want to rain on anyone's parade, but waiting 3 business days to announce the results of an automated computer poll is far more suggestive of corruption than a mid-stream rule change. The final results are known the second the poll is closed. Just sayin'. - Amgine/meta wikt wnews blog wmf-blog goog news 03:39, 13 June 2011 (UTC)
Nah-- no corruption needed to explain the delay. I'm sure others can elaborate more, but I know we'd want to do some basic 'integrity checks' on the results to make sure everything looks cool-- no '100 identical votes from a single ip' or anything crazy like that. Just announcing without taking a breath would be inviting an election disaster if the 'preliminary results' ever turned out not to match the 'actual results'. Better to pause for a second, make 100% sure everything okay, and then release.
I hope next time (next year, ideally?) we could have optionally-secret voting with rationales, so that the community can feel very confident in the votes. I'm confident in them, but mandatory-secret-balloting over the internet will inevitably lead to recurrence of these sorts of concerns. --Alecmconroy 04:04, 13 June 2011 (UTC)
Strongly oppose any extension. It probably should have been opened longer (or the email sent out earlier), but changing the rules halfway through just looks terrible and reeks of corruption. File this under the many issues around this election that need to be reviewed and improved upon next time. Craig Franklin 06:27, 13 June 2011 (UTC).
Just rise 2 facts: 1. I get the mail at about 11th of June (GMT+8) by push mail system, and then that is already late at night, and i open the page and check those candidate and decided to look into detail at the afternoon of next day, and after i did this i realize the poll ended. 2. a poll in chinese wikipedia held months ago have unclear rule finally have to have the poll to start from the beginning again.C933103 18:47, 13 June 2011 (UTC)
For my part, I should update to say I proposed the extension of voting. The -reopening- of already closed voting is more controversial and confusing, and thus it's less certain to me that such a re-opening would be a good idea. I was strong for 'keep the doors open', but am only neutral on 'reopen the doors'. --Alecmconroy 19:24, 14 June 2011 (UTC)

Update global banner[edit]

There are only 16 hours left in voting. If we're not going to extend it, can we somehow update the global banner as a 'flash' to remind people that votes are about to close? The banner hasn't been updated in some time, so anyone not currently 'plugged in' to the elections may not be aware voting is about to end. --Alecmconroy 08:07, 12 June 2011 (UTC)

It currently reads: "The Wikimedia Board of Trustees election has started. Please vote." We could quickly add to that-- using something already widely translated like "Votes will be accepted until 23:59 UTC 12 Jun 2011". --Alecmconroy 08:13, 12 June 2011 (UTC)

Raising attention for the next elections[edit]

Here is my draft of the timeline for the next election. --Millosh 10:10, 12 June 2011 (UTC)

  • After the present election:
    • Formal or informal group interested in raising participation in decision-making processes in Wikimedia should be gathered. The group should develop methods and start to implement them.
  • One year before the beginning of submissions:
    • New Election committee should be appointed.
    • EC should develop approaches for raising electoral attention inside of the Wikimedia communities; and it should start to implement it.
  • Two months before the beginning of submissions:
    • email, lists announcements: Help with translation of materials for the election etc.
  • One month before the beginning of submissions:
    • email, lists announcements: Candidates submissions will start in one month. <other important information>
  • The beginning of submissions (three weeks):
    • email: Submissions for the Board election have started. You can become a candidate.
    • lists announcements (foundation-l, internal-l; other lists as well): Submissions for the Board election have started. You can become a candidate.
    • site notice: You can become a candidate.
  • The end of submissions, one more week for the questions:
    • email: The end of submissions; you can see now the whole list of candidates and ask them questions. Please, translate questions and candidates' answers.
  • The end of making questions. Time for translations should last two weeks at least:
    • email: No more questions to the candidates. All candidates should have answered questions and now there is the period for translations. Please, translate questions and candidates' answers.
    • lists announcements: the same as email
  • Beginning of the election.
    • email: Election has started, please vote.
    • lists announcements (foundation-l, internal-l; other lists as well): Please, vote, just 2 days left.
    • site notice: Please vote.
  • One week before the end of election.
    • email just to those who didn't vote yet: Please, vote, just 7 days left.
  • Two days before the end of election.
    • email just to those who didn't vote yet: Please, vote, just 2 days left.
    • lists announcements (foundation-l, internal-l; other lists as well): Please, vote, just 2 days left.

--Millosh 10:10, 12 June 2011 (UTC)

Just a quick note for now (more later, possibly): many people are very opposed to getting e-mails, certainly so many e-mails, even if they are not on the nomail list. So I wouldn't (ab)use the mail tool so much. Harel 12:33, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
Yes. Last two emails should be sent just to those who wouldn't vote up to that moment (fixed above). For others: I don't think that it is too much to get 6 emails in 3+ months. It could be said inside of the first email that they would get 5 more emails and that they could opt-out from all of them (which already exists) or just from those not marked as "very important" (which would be emails for calling on elections; one, two or three, depending on the time when that person would vote). --Millosh 12:41, 12 June 2011 (UTC)
Can the date for determining voter eligibility be set immediately before the first call for candidate submissions? It would be good to make sure all eligible voters have equal notice of candidacy requirements. Not R 16:48, 13 June 2011 (UTC)
  • Just a small quirk to remember:
This year the subject of the mail sent was "Wikimedia Foundation Elections 2009", please update the subject next year. --M/ 20:23, 14 June 2011 (UTC)

Possibly spam[edit]

A user has said to me that he has received an e-mail from one of the candidates. In this mail, the candidate says that somebody wants to destroy the Catalan wikipedia, and other wikipedias in other languages, and encourages the addressee to vote him and others, and not to vote to anothers, with the names, of course. I'm worried about the legality of this kind of spam. Regards. --Millars 14:37, 12 June 2011 (UTC)

if it was a customized one-off email to a single individual, it's a private communication and should be kept private-- Candidates can have opinions.
If it's a mass mailing that is clearly meant to be widely distributed, you could email it to the elections committee members and they can take a peek at it. (note that I'm NOT on the election committee, i'm just an insomniac :) )
As far as I'm concerned, this election was "game on"-- meaning, I haven't heard any official rules against mass communication. Although biased mass communication would be very frowned upon, or at least, it would make me frown-- I had a list of 300 people who agreed with me on a particular polarizing issue, and it was entirely 'wikimorality' that guided me NOT to even THINK about contacting them all-- not so much any clear guidance from explicit rules.
So, that's my '2 cents'. I don't think it was illegal, just bad form. I didn't publicly advocate for or against of the Catalan candidates, so perhaps it's clearer that I'm neither conspiring to destroy it nor conspiring to promote it. :) --Alecmconroy 15:14, 12 June 2011 (UTC)

Millars, I want to say that from your construction two candidates would suffer up to the end of the day. It would be good to say who is that candidate, so the other one wouldn't get negative votes. (Although, I can guess who is that candidate.) --Millosh 15:34, 12 June 2011 (UTC)

The mail was, allegedly, sent from Capsot's account. --Millars 15:47, 12 June 2011 (UTC)

I'm suprised because the members of the elections committee have not said anything. So, can I understand canvassing is accepted in elections and other issues of WMF and Meta-Wikimedia? --Millars 14:24, 16 June 2011 (UTC)

I don't think it is very civil, in Meta-issues or elsewhere. I mentioned this as something that needs to be clarified in the post-mortem. Your input there would be welcome. SJ talk | translate   03:44, 20 June 2011 (UTC)
Thank you Samuel. I write a new input in the post-mortem page. --Millars 10:17, 21 June 2011 (UTC)

Many thanks and Two last questions for all[edit]

Thanks to all the candidates, coordinators, and participants! While we have everyone here:

  • In general, what Lessons have we learned from this election? please get thoughts down now while they're fresh. :)
  • And especially for the candidates-- can you give us an idea of sense of how many words/characters you would have needed to say all you wanted to say in your candidate presentation?

Thanks to all again! Congrats to the future board members, whoever they turn out to be! --Alecmconroy 02:04, 13 June 2011 (UTC)

  • 1) Needs more time for translation and discussion (I think two extra weeks wouldn't go amiss), and 2) About twice what I had. — Coren (talk) / (en-wiki) 02:34, 13 June 2011 (UTC)

Cancelled votes[edit]

I have been cheeking the votes and I see there are some of them strikethrough. I see almost always they are people who voted again later. But there are 7 cases who didn’t voted again. I think this means that those votes are cancelled. Could somebody explain the reasons for cancelling them?

  • 07:25, 29 May 2011Abbasjnr
  • 14:04, 10 June 2011Alien life form
  • 23:27, 30 May 2011Catgirl
  • 00:09, 29 May 2011Jon Harald Søby
  • 22:50, 7 June 2011PanteraRosa
  • 00:42, 29 May 2011Ral315
  • 22:29, 7 June 2011Tibidabo

--Gomà 09:03, 15 June 2011 (UTC)

Members of the election committee (e.g. Abbasjnr, Jon Harald Søby, Ral315) cannot vote in the election. Markus Schulze 09:27, 15 June 2011 (UTC)
Where did you even see that log, Gomà? I think out of the loop on some special page. --Alecmconroy 12:05, 15 June 2011 (UTC)
The list is here on the independant wiki used to host the vote (I agree it was somewhat troublesome to locate again :)) --ErrantX 12:09, 15 June 2011 (UTC)
Edit conflict. Here ordered by voter's name] and here to chek eligibility. Apart from committee members all the others seems perfectly eligible voters. --Gomà 12:16, 15 June 2011 (UTC)
So, ~4000 votes? not bad. Certainly enough to dilute my voter guide to the point that I don't feel guilty about it. :) --Alecmconroy 12:50, 15 June 2011 (UTC)
According to my figures they are 3306 -7 = 3299. Not bad. On 2009 we got 2940. Your voter's guide has been seen 665 times. But who should feel guilty are the voters who followed your recommendations not you. :) --Gomà 13:06, 15 June 2011 (UTC)

Why the votes of PanteraRosa, Tibidabo and Catgirl are been cancelled? --Davidpar (talk) 18:43, 16 June 2011 (UTC)

My personal unofficial investigation says that Catgirl in Catalan Wikipedia is the same user than Cata-girl in English Wikipedia then according to the rules the last one is kept. Cata-girl voted on 10 June while Catgirl voted on 30 May. But I can' find any explanations for PanteraRosa, Tibidabo, and "Alien life form". I hope Committee will be able to give us some explanation.--Gomà 19:36, 16 June 2011 (UTC)

Where are the results?[edit]

At what time the results are going to be published? --f3RaN 16:16, 15 June 2011 (UTC)

I'd say any time now. 9:17 AM in San Francisco, 16:00 UTC. --Alecmconroy 16:18, 15 June 2011 (UTC)
I do hope they come out soon... otherwise WMF will be setting a bad precedent of "my clock, not the official clock (UTC)"! Deryck Chan 16:46, 15 June 2011 (UTC)
I must admit that I'm disappointed that result day has come and gone without a word from the organizers. Crap happens, and everyone expects something will go wrong; but it's important to keep the communication lines open. — Coren (talk) / (en-wiki) 00:17, 16 June 2011 (UTC)
I wonder if this is just usual busy-ness, or if there's a problem that's cropped up in the process somehow. --Alecmconroy 00:19, 16 June 2011 (UTC)
I want to echo Coren's concern that no word at all has been posted. If something has delayed the results that's one thing, but we would like a notification of the delay and an idea of what magnitude it might be. Eluchil404 06:14, 16 June 2011 (UTC)
Support Pro +1 from me. www.aiting... --Trofobi 08:01, 16 June 2011 (UTC)

Of course that I don’t care at all if the results are published today, tomorrow or later. But the point is that it is not serious and just shows a lake of coordination which is somehow disappointing, especially because there is not even a communication informing about the unexpected delay. Also the main page is not updated, even tough the election has finished. Who integrates the election committee responsible for the revision of the votes and the publication of the results? If this committee is overcharged maybe it should be just bigger, as easy as this. --f3RaN 08:40, 16 June 2011 (UTC)

I'm really sorry no word was said until now, but we have some technical problems. We have been working on them for last 24h, and hope they are solved. I hope (no guarantees), that results will be out in the next 24h. Sorry Matanya 14:14, 16 June 2011 (UTC)
Thank you very much, Matanya, for coming to help us by giving us an update. Much appreciated! --Alecmconroy
Thank you for the Info and thank you all for your long work on that! All the best --Trofobi 21:57, 16 June 2011 (UTC)

17th - was there only one announced date that was keept? The Commitee should not give such fabelous dates, if there's no chance to keep it. Marcus Cyron 13:33, 17 June 2011 (UTC)

While we wait, let's think about 2012[edit]

A lot of people higher than me have suggested that we need to have yearly elections just as part of a healthy community-building exercise, regardless of whether there's an available seat to fill or not. If so, perhaps we start working on the very very very light outlines of a 2012 election timeline, in the event that election does occur, recognizing at present we don't know what will be on the ballot. --Alecmconroy 17:29, 15 June 2011 (UTC)

I find that idea a little absurd. It might be true that yearly elections for available board seats are needed (or not), but to plan an election that doesn't even have a well-defined task to fulfill seems inane. Harel 17:46, 15 June 2011 (UTC)
I can't dispute that. :) I just know we have lots of people sitting here hitting refresh waiting to see who won. :) --Alecmconroy 17:51, 15 June 2011 (UTC)
Actually, and quite regrettably, I'm quite confident it's not as many people as you might think.... And from what I heard from the election committee, the results might not be published today. Harel 17:59, 15 June 2011 (UTC)
  1. Instead of hitting refreash you can put the page in your watch list and then tick “E-mail me when a page on my watchlist is changed” in your user preferences (Oops! I have revealed my secret to those who think I am glued to meta).
  2. It can be a good practice to renew 50% of the mebers each year instead of 100% every two years.
  3. There are other positions I think they should be elected by the editors: Chapters Committee members and Grant Advisory Committee members. --Gomà 18:17, 15 June 2011 (UTC)
Gomà: for a 3-seat position, it may be a bit difficult to replace 50% of the members ;) Deryck Chan 22:39, 15 June 2011 (UTC)

Also, if you haven't seen my recent manifesto collection:

Feed us some statistics![edit]

Any chance someone can contact User:Pathoschild so we can have such a page again? User:Pathoschild/Board_elections_statistics (from the 2008 elections), it was really useful... Harel 18:41, 15 June 2011 (UTC)

And when you're at it, would it be possible to also make them for 2009? :P Effeietsanders 22:30, 15 June 2011 (UTC)
That's a +1 and a +1 on both of those, good buddy. --Alecmconroy 22:38, 15 June 2011 (UTC)
Here you are my own unofficial statistics. --Gomà 06:53, 16 June 2011 (UTC)
Unfortunately, I need access to confidential election data to generate the detailed statistics. —Pathoschild 01:58:51, 17 June 2011 (UTC)
Who has the authority and the ability to give you that data? --Alecmconroy 02:09, 17 June 2011 (UTC)
The 2011 Board Election Committee. —Pathoschild 02:18:36, 17 June 2011 (UTC)
Anybody else? they're a little bit missing lately? Statistics are how we learn... I wish we could do a huge survey of non-voters too. --Alecmconroy 02:23, 17 June 2011 (UTC)
Nope; it's within their scope. —Pathoschild 02:54:14, 17 June 2011 (UTC)

+1 for a non-voter survey. Since we expanded suffrage this year (2 to 3x as many people were eligible - we should confirm the #) and only slightly expanded voter turnout, it would also be interesting to know things such as

  • did voters this time vote last time?
  • specifically ask questions of voters last time who did not vote this time
  • did you want to vote but...
    • found out about the elections too late to vote?
    • forgot until it was too late?
    • were ineligible?
  • did you decide not to vote because...
    • why bother?
    • on a wiki-break generally
    • don't feel strongly about most issues or candidates

SJ talk | translate   10:25, 18 June 2011 (UTC)

Delays and Lessons[edit]

These sorts of delays highlight one of the downside of secret ballots-- delays, technical difficulties, or other problems might tend to undermine election results. I've been around enough that I'm kinda immune to the effect-- I trust ya'll, whoever ya'll is in this circumstance. But the wider global community may not always take things as well as we semi-insiders do-- we've heard from one person who thought the mere existence of a delay suggested corruption, and that view may or may not be prevalent in some communities.

A lot of our voters are strangers to our movement. Some may not have strong traditions of democratic-style leadership in their background. For some people, the very young and members [of] some nations, this might even be the first serious "election" they've had an opportunity [to vote in]

In spreading knowledge to the world, we're entirely too focused on "declarative, explicit facts" and not nearly enough focused on "educational and informative" experiences. --Alecmconroy 20:30, 16 June 2011 (UTC)

added [] text to clarify meaning. Alecmconroy 01:24, 17 June 2011 (UTC)
There is always a delay if nothing more than because it takes time to go and eliminate sockpuppets, and this can't be done quickly because it must be done fairly. And to do it fairly, the socks must be eliminated before the ballots are decrypted, so that its harder to do it selectively to bias the outcome. This is the price of keeping the participation requirements low. If the eligibility required better evidence that you were a real person and not just a farm of old hacked accounts then less checking would be required, but then a lot of real people wouldn't bother voting.
I don't know if thats the cause of the current delay but it's just one of the reasons the results are not instant and can't really be.--Gmaxwell 20:44, 16 June 2011 (UTC)
Replying to all on issue of delays: I don't mean to personally suggest these delays are a problem for me-- I want people taking absolutely as long as it takes. :) . It's just that in thinking ahead, I know the secret ballots + delays are a problem for some people who don't understand why a delay is essential. --Alecmconroy 23:34, 16 June 2011 (UTC)

section break added by alecmconroy[edit]

Alec, I might be misinterpreting you, but this is the sort of patronizing attitude that sometimes besets the foundation and the movement. Wikimedia is not about providing "educational and informative experiences" such as democratic elections to members of "nations" that never partook in elections. This is not a political make-believe game we're playing here, the Board is not a government and the Foundation is not a country. In the same manner, I do not agree with some of the analysis you made in your voter guide, trying to ascribe certain characteristics to certain candidates just because of the perceived political climate in which they have grown up. You're taking things in the wrong direction, dramatizing everything in a political-historical setting that's beyond our focus and scope. Harel 20:54, 16 June 2011 (UTC)

Hi Harel! I'm so sorry to find I've been upsetting you, but so happy we can talk about it. Deeply sincerely, thank you for sharing these concerns with me-- I've been very much operating 'in a vacuum' without much substantive feedback on most of what I've done in this election-- a few things were clearly unpopular, a fair amount of people gave me generic positive feedback of 'good work', but I need to learn from this, and more importantly "we" need to learn from this.

The other thing I want to get right off the bat is that I also do not agree at all with ascribing characteristics to candidates because of their perceived political climates-- and if I did, you would have ranked even higher in my voter guide, and as it was you were ranked quite high-- your region is also a democracy that's struggled with violence.

In my voter guide, I did mention Milos's background and how it would help him-- because in practice I think voters want to know a little background just to have something to "anchor" their memories on, and also diverse backgrounds are important to some voters. But I think a talented writer could write up something like that for every single candidate. Kat and SJ are incumbents, I wrote about Milos's background since he was the one 'new face' I supported.

But background was an entirely after-the-fact addition-- NOT a decisive force at all. Indeed, if I had been willing to use global background as a criteria, you would have been one of my top two choices.

The voter guide in general was based on my ultimately false assumption that at LEAST all of enwp-arbcom voters were "on board" with the global mission, and thus would come to discuss and vote. My guide was conceived of as being one of dozens, not one of two. Thus I stopped working on it, limiting my commented to the incumbents, one newcomer i strongly supported, and a few other names of people who seemed to be imminently qualified for the board within my limited ability to detect. I make no claim that my guesses are any better than anyone else's-- most of the my time was spent trying to get more people to share their guesses so we could learn from their opinions, not so much share my own.

quoting: Wikimedia is not about providing "educational and informative experiences" such as democratic elections to members of "nations" that never partook in elections.

First of all, I don't know how many contributors we have who live in authoritarian nations where there are no elections, but that's not primarily who I'm thinking of. I've lived in the US-- to me, someone who's never voted in a democratic election is most likely someone who's lived in a nation with democratic elections all their life.

I suspect you think I somehow meant that we need to "spread americanism" when I say we have a direct interest in "engaging people in democracy". I don't. Democracy is a social technology humans can use to make decisions; it's the social technology that our foundation and our movement have chosen to use to make the board member decision. We have no interest in "spreading Americanism"-- but we do have a direct interest in "spreading knowledge of democracy".

Right now, the main way we "spread knowledge" is just by writing it down. But I think the 'spirit' of the movement is more about using information technology to share knowledge in general-- meaning not just generating and sharing "one set" of "fixed documents". Rather, I think we want to share knowledge any way we can. Usually we use text and images, but sometimes we educate in other ways. When "cultural educational" and "factual education" are at odds, then certainly content is king. But here there's no conflict at all-- the actions needed to "educate about democracy" and and the actions to "helping us with work the WMF already needs doing (picking a leader via election)"-- in this instance these exact same acts. We should recognize and embrace both aspects of the education we do-- the empirical knowledge we share AND the transformative experiences we provide. We should embrace both aspects--- if only for PR purposes. .

Democracy is a very loaded word, full of connotations of imperialism, perhaps I shouldn't have used it. I just mean, most people, even in my nation, have not participated in collaborative decision making of this kind. When they do, we need to be alert to the special needs they may have-- for example, less likely to trust the central authority, etc. .

Democracy is a loaded word, as I said, but if we have any projects that that wouldn't identify with that term, we should learn about their collaborative decision making processes too.

quote "You're taking things in the wrong direction, dramatizing everything in a political-historical setting that's beyond our focus and scope."

Maybe.... but there is an exciting, positive, dramatic political-historical change happening-- we're a part of it, and we might even be at the center of it. It don't know who made it so dramatic, but it wasn't my idea.

At some point, it dawned on me that we're not just going for multilingual education, we're going for _global_ education. I believe this came out of the strategy movement. This kind of sentiment had always existed, but what Sue and all the others involved did was really crystallize that "truly global" education objective. And it's an AMAZING goal, that is virtually beyond controversy, and most of all, it feels like "a goal we had all along" and it feels like "our unique calling", a goal for which the wikimedia community is uniquely suited to accomplish.

That's where the drama comes from. I saw an interview of Jimmy doing something he does amazingly well, promoting us in the media, in this case on The Daily Show, and the host asked a question that was unintentionally comical:

Suggesting that Jimmy is envious of the Founders of Facebook, the host asked, in paraphrase, "Do you ever go to the Facebook movie and sit it the back with liquor and scream 'I could have been those guys' ".

To me and probably to most of us, this question was quite silly, because it's a little bit like asking the pope if he's envious of the owners of the Rubik's Cube--- you can't compare a global movement to the single product, no matter how temporarily successful that product is.

Quoting in part from Jimmy's excellent answer: "We're a space that's not commercial; we're a space where people can go to learn, reflect, share knowledge. We're global in scope, trying to share free information with every single person on the planet in their own language. I think in 500 years people will look back and they'll say 'Facebook?? what was that?' But then they'll say 'Oh, Wikipedia, yeah that was something really special.'"

I think Jimmy's right-- Wikipedias plus all our other valued projects-- the Wikimedia movement in total-- this is something very very special. Not "Rubik's Cube" special or "hula-hoop" special, but "Gutenberg Press" kind of special. I see it, I think most "meta" people see it too. But the global community of editors doesn't see it yet-- or rather, to the extent they see do see "the big dream", they don't see the foundation as having that much to do with it accomplishing it.

In essence, the board can be whatever it chooses to be. Its member can be entirely business-oriented, focused only on accomplishing the task at hand. But the board members also have the a chance to become "Leaders of a global movement"-- an ever growing movement that needs leadership. The foundation can be just an ISP with a fundraising team, or it can embody the wiki process and see itself as the corporate arm of a positive social & educational revolution in how humans share knowledge.

But the only way to get to be a "movement leader" is through some sort of discussion and debate process, whether formal or informal, discussion and debate is the only way anyone can have authority over the global movement. Vote tallies alone will get us trustees who can do a fine job, but they'll never have the same level of global respect as trustees who have been exposed to a rigorous discussion process. --Alecmconroy 00:50, 17 June 2011 (UTC)

Facebook-like-button.png Loved reading this. Thanks, John Vandenberg 12:16, 17 June 2011 (UTC)
Ditto. The last point in particular is spot-on: it is important for our mission and movement to have a good discussion process; not just important to choosing good leaders. I also hope to see more detailed, interested guides/discussions like Alec's in the future (and similarly both liked it at first in the hopes that it would be one of many, and worried about its implied bias when it ended up being the only detailed one). SJ talk | translate   10:18, 18 June 2011 (UTC)


Timing[edit]

As far as I can say, we are very hopeful that we can announce the results within several hours, we are almost done Mardetanha talk 13:24, 17 June 2011 (UTC)

Perhaps time for a change of venue? Talk:Board elections/2011/Results/en. --Alecmconroy 16:40, 17 June 2011 (UTC)


Problems with voting[edit]

Example from an en:wp admin

"Hi, either my computer at work or the en.WP database has a glitch. It won't let me vote. Do I have to disable cookies? What is trhe correct site out of en.WP? Bearian (talk) 16:25, 13 June 2011 (UTC)
Oh, dear. It appears that the polls closed before I could vote! Bearian (talk) 16:27, 13 June 2011 (UTC)

Post mortem[edit]

For your information: I have started a post mortem page at Board elections/2011/Post mortem. All input is appreciated! Jon Harald Søby 14:27, 19 June 2011 (UTC)

Move request for all election pages[edit]

There is a large move request at Meta:Proposed_page_moves#Current_requests that needs more feedback. John Vandenberg (talk) 06:47, 11 October 2012 (UTC)

Voter list[edit]

Do we have a list of people who voted in the 2011 board election? I thought it was on https://wikimedia.spi-inc.org/ , but that site is now down. John Vandenberg (talk) 01:20, 22 June 2013 (UTC)

i was looking around earlier, I have not been able to find one. We should be able to get good stats and info for this election however. Jalexander (talk) 02:14, 22 June 2013 (UTC)
That is a shame. It was public data. It would be nice to compare stats with the last election. Especially demographics. The lack of participation in the current election will be compared to previous elections, and it would be very important to know which 2011 voters have since stopped contributing at all. I have notified the 2011 election committee members in the hope that they have a copy. SPI may also have a database dump lying around somewhere that we should request. John Vandenberg (talk) 06:08, 22 June 2013 (UTC)
I'm afraid I don't have a copy hanging around that I can find. One of the other board members may have saved a dump file, but I did not. Ral315 (talk) 00:10, 23 June 2013 (UTC)
I was seriously looking for it when writing the Signpost update a few days ago. Gave up. Would like it for next week's. Tony (talk) 05:36, 23 June 2013 (UTC)
I haven't had such a list. Matanya (talk) 11:25, 23 June 2013 (UTC)

Abbasjnr doesnt have a copy [6]. @Mardetanha: & @Jon Harald Søby: & @Gomà:, please let us know if you have a voter list. John Vandenberg (talk) 23:09, 14 July 2013 (UTC)

Should we ask SPI if they have a copy of this data? If so, that request might be better coming from WMF. But the data is desirable .. last week .. John Vandenberg (talk) 04:04, 27 June 2013 (UTC)

Gomà's analysis[edit]

I've found some analysis at User:Gomà/Elections 2011, however it uses an interesting formula to choose language, and doesnt cover all languages. I quite like the formula used. John Vandenberg (talk) 04:08, 27 June 2013 (UTC)