Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees/Call for feedback: Community Board seats/Reports/ASBS 2019

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This report is based on the 2019 debrief by the Affiliate-selected Board seats Election Facilitators, containing extensive recommendations for coming affiliation selection processes. As this Debrief contains some valuable input to the Call for Feedback: community board seats this report has been written on it.

As many paragraphs are not directly related to the current Call for Feedback but are focussed on details of the preparation of a selection process in general, they have been dismissed in this context. In case you are interested in these, please check the Debrief itself. As always: in case you miss something in this report, please address your issue on the talk page, we will reconsider the report then.

Ranked Voting System / Single Transferable Vote[edit]

The debrief is focused on the 2019 selection process amongst affiliates, where a Single Transferable Vote system has been used. The insights concerning it are quite detailed and make clear, that the decision for a specific method has deep implications. The points are quoted here in detail:

  • Determine the voting method and the method of counting the ballots
  • Reconsider the use of Single Transferable Voting with Droop quota
  • 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.
  • Consider improving the ballot design
  • Include a procedure what to do in case of a tie, for example one common practice is to draw lots, in a random but publicly-verifiable way
  • Allow issuing of new ballots upon request during the voting period
  • There are other websites and software packages much better suited to managing elections.
  • Reconsider STV, it is not urgent. No voting system is perfect. The script in use has some peculiarities
  • Some ballots did not have a candidate with a rank 1
  • Some ballots skipped ranks
  • Some ballots showed only high numbers

Public hearing of candidates[edit]

The debrief contains a proposal to a public hearing of candidates before the selection process starts. This would not replace the legally required vetting process by the board. These points are quoted here in detail:

  • Allow for a question and answer phase, preferably a month-long
  • Allow for a candidate presentation at the Wikimedia Summit [or other meetups], these are a good place for candidate presentations
  • Have questions and answers on Meta

Requests from the community[edit]

Quoted from the ASBS 2019 debrief:

  • The selection process to be decided by affiliates [the voters target group], to be approved by the Board of Trustees of the Wikimedia Foundation.