Affiliate-selected Board seats/2019/Debrief

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Draft debrief/evaluation/post-mortem by Election Facilitators

This page is meant to be edited by Election Facilitators only. Coordination by affiliates to plan and to organize the next process, or to draft een new resolution, please do on a separate page. Discussion on the talk page please. These are the recommendations by the Election Facilitators. Affiliates can adopt, discard or embrace these recommendations as they wish. On top the recommendations. Below the recommendations there are explanatory notes.

Recommendations[edit]

Process[edit]

  1. Start early
  2. Allow plenty of time in each phase
  3. Create a new resolution regulating the next process
  4. Appoint Election Facilitators for the next process way ahead of the process
  5. Have the nomination period completed prior to the Wikimedia Summit

Communication[edit]

  1. Keep it short and simple
  2. Translate in at least five languages
  3. Meta is the central place to post issues and questions
  4. Publicly posted issues and questions will be followed up quickly
  5. Election Facilitators should hold weekly video teleconferences
  6. Continue to use the all-affiliate mailing list to reach all affiliates
  7. Put non-ambiguous sentences in reports

Resolution regulating the selection process[edit]

  1. To be decided by affiliates
  2. To be approved by the Board of Trustees of the Wikimedia Foundation
  3. To be ready long ahead before the start of the process
  4. Be specific for the upcoming selection process
  5. Determine the eligibility rules of the affiliates (clear procedure)
  6. Determine the weight of voting for affiliates (now all equal)
  7. Determine that official voters will cast their vote *on behalf* of an affiliate, and will be publicly identified by their meta userid, and perhaps by their email address if necessary for authentication to the voting system.
  8. Determine the nomination process, including the endorsement process
  9. Determine a profile for an ideal candidate
  10. Determine the minimum and the maximum number of required endorsements per candidate
  11. Determine the minimum and the maximum number of endorsements an affiliate can give
  12. Determine if nomination is done on meta in a candidate page
  13. Determine if endorsements are done on the candidate page
  14. Determine if endorsement is
    1. only a signature on behalf of an affiliate, or
    2. a signature on behalf of an affiliate including a statement
  15. Determine the maximum length of candidate statement and endorsement statements
  16. Consider the costs of translation in the determination of this maximum length
  17. Determine the voting method and the method of counting the ballots
  18. Reconsider the use of Single Transferable Voting with Droop quota
  19. If necessary, explain that ranking is ranking and not like the Eurovision Song Contest point counting - pay attention to the design of the ballots, and test those designs
  20. Consider improving the ballot design
  21. Include a procedure what to do in case of a tie, for example:
    1. One common practice is to draw lots, in a random but publicly-verifiable way
    2. Alternatives are to hold another election
    3. Referral to another body to choose or elect
  22. Specify what constitutes a tie: exact match of result (not below a small margin)

Decision process between affiliates[edit]

  1. Without organization of affiliates the default is consensus
  2. Post proposals on meta, announce the proposal through all-affiliate mailing list
  3. Allow communication through any channel, though the preferred place is the talk page
  4. Continue editing the proposal until consensus :)
  5. Ultimately most breakthroughs in decision making are in and after face-to-face meetings
  6. Have an all affiliate meeting at Wikimania and at the Wikimedia summit in Berlin :)
  7. Take etherpads during offline meetings, post reports on meta after the meetings

Decision process within affiliates[edit]

  1. Incorporated affiliates (like chapters) do have defined internal decision processes like general member meetings and boards
  2. Not incorporated affiliates (like most user groups) do not have general member meetings or boards. The internal decision processes of these affiliates are entirely up to these affiliates only
  3. Accept that voting, and deciding in general, on behalf of an affiliate is a challenge for most user groups
  4. A thorg is a thematic organization

Recruitment, selection and appointment of Election Facilitators[edit]

  1. Affiliates are collectively responsible for:
    • the recruitment of Election Facilitators,
    • the selection of Election Facilitators and
    • the appointment of Election Facilitators
  2. The mandate of Election Facilitators starts only after appointment by a majority decision by affiliates
  3. Volunteers for this role can show their interest on a meta page
  4. Once they have shown their interest to become an Election Facilitator they can not be a candidate anymore in this process
  5. Appoint Election Facilitators a year before the appointment of new board members
  6. Have a diverse and inclusive team of volunteers of all genders and multiple languages

Nomination and endorsement of candidates[edit]

  1. Active recruitment of suitable candidates by affiliates should be encouraged
  2. Candidates are encouraged to actively solicit the required number of endorsements
  3. Canvassing is allowed
  4. Spamming user talk pages and affiliate talkpages by candidates should be discouraged
  5. Endorsements by affiliate signals partially the suitability of the candidate to become a board member

Questions to screen candidates[edit]

  1. Allow for a question and answer phase, preferably a month long
  2. Allow for a candidate presentation at the Wikimedia summit
  3. Have questions and answers on meta

List of eligible entities and official voters[edit]

  1. Publish a list of eligible entities on meta
  2. Include the (user) names of the person who will vote for each affiliate
  3. (Staff of the) Election Facilitators must have access to the mail address of official voters

Voting[edit]

  1. Qualtrics works for collecting valid votes
  2. Allow issuing of new ballots upon request during the voting period
  3. Consider the Election Facilitators having exclusive control over sending out ballots and receiving ballots
  4. There are other websites and software packages much better suited to managing elections.

Counting[edit]

  1. Allow the Election Facilitators plenty of time to count the votes
  2. Publish the results of the election including:
    • who voted for which affiliate
    • who got a new ballot
    • the details of each ballot
    • a detailed report of the counting of the votes
    • show for each voting step how much each ballot contribute to each candidate

Explanatory notes[edit]

Above are the recommendations by the Election Facilitators. What follows are some explanatory notes by the facilitators to help clarify the recommendations.

Feedback from affiliates will be collected during a meeting at Wikimania Stockholm. It is up to the affiliates to decide what to do with these recommendations, including the collected feedback.

Process[edit]

  1. The process this year started (too) late because of circumstances
  1. The Wikimedia Summit is a good place for candidate presentations

Communication[edit]

  1. There was a report with the sentence “at least one facilitator dissenting?”, which was ambiguous and/or a terrible formulation in any case

Resolution[edit]

  1. Someone will draft a new version on meta
  2. Others will edit until consensus
  3. This year it was hard to determine who was eligible
  4. This year people complained about the endorsement rules
  5. People resented the maximum number of endorsements an affiliate can give
  6. People resented the maximum number of endorsements a candidate can receive
  7. People were uncertain how a candidate can obtain exactly two endorsements
  8. People didn't agree if an endorsement is a signature or a statement
  9. There were questions about someone not becoming an Election Facilitator and then nominating themselves as a candidate in the election. The rules said Election Facilitators can not stand in the election
  10. Reconsider STV, it is not urgent. No voting system is perfect. The script in use has some peculiarities

Decision process between affiliates[edit]

  1. There was no decision process between affiliates prior to this election
  2. Chapters do have some sort of process, but that does not include user groups
  3. Having a majority of affiliates decide on the election process (draft resolution) will be challenging
  4. The recommendations offer some suggestions, do as you please

Decision process within affiliates[edit]

  1. User groups are an affiliate model created by the board as the most lightweight organization model of Wikimedians imaginable
  2. The Election Facilitators can not propose recommendations for the decision process within user groups
  3. Remarkably enough, quite a few user groups managed to hold internal elections to determine how to vote on behalf of their affiliate

Recruitment, selection and appointment of Election Facilitators[edit]

  1. Volunteers showing an interest to become Election Facilitator are just ordinary volunteer without any mandate to do anything. They can not act on behalf of the majority of affiliates prior to being appointed as Election Facilitators
  2. The process this year began late because the affiliates did not appoint Election Facilitators in time
  3. Diversity is key. Calling for women EFs isn't enough. There were comments of calling for all genders and calling specifically for non binary people, and use gender neutral language

Nomination and endorsement of candidates[edit]

  1. The original idea of the ASBS process was that affiliates might recruit people from their network who would not get elected through the community election. The ASBS process ended up in nomination of Wikimedians who are leaders in their community.
  2. The resolution this year did not have rules or guidelines for the endorsement process. Some people asked for rules and guidelines after the resolution was approved. The Election Facilitator did not have the mandate to change the rules or to provide ad hoc guidelines
  3. Some candidates received more than two endorsements. These were removed from the candidate page by Election Facilitators, to comply with the resolution
  4. In one case an endorsement on a candidate page was swapped with an endorsement on the talk page by an Election Facilitator (upon request by the candidate). This happened.

Questions to screen candidates[edit]

  1. This process went well
  2. The Trust and Safety team provided support in monitoring civility
  3. T&S had nothing to do :)

List of eligible entities and official voters[edit]

  1. The Election Facilitators did not have access themselves to a full list of contact persons with email addresses
  2. Wikimedia Foundation staff had control over a list of contact persons and email addresses
  3. Eventually a list of eligible entities and official voters was published on meta
  4. The big issue is who is eligible. This year being up-to-date with reporting was an eligibility requirement. But who does determine who is up-to-date with reporting?
  5. No complaints about eligibility status were received from affiliates

Voting[edit]

  1. Qualtrics was run by WMF staff, not by Election Facilitators
  2. Election Facilitators did not have exclusive access to the data

Counting[edit]

  1. Some ballots did not have a candidate with a rank 1
  2. Some ballots skipped ranks
  3. Some ballots showed only high numbers
  4. Election Facilitators discussed whether those ballots were valid votes and correctly represented voter intention, or were mistaken
  5. How to interpret a 0,04 sum of vote value between two candidates in the last but one step of the Single Transferable Vote system?