# Re: Call for project leader candidates

On Mon, Nov 03, 1997 at 10:10:00AM -0800, Bruce Perens wrote:
> From: Stephen Zander <srz@mckesson.com>
> > What enfranchises an individual in this election (i.e., what entitles
> > them to vote)?
>
> The short answer is that they are Debian's developers. They must be
> regular workers on the Debian distribution who have already been
> admitted to the private mailing list. Most of these people are Debian
> package maintainers, a few hold other positions for the project.

This feels like being hit by a brick.  When was it decided to allow only
developers to vote?  I've been a dedicated user for two years, and I
assumed that being a regular reader of debian-user and debian-devel was
sufficient credential to be a full-fledged Debianite.  I'm sure there
are other users who feel the same way.

I understand there are complications in allowing users to vote:
we don't know how many users there are, or who's a bona fide serious
user; we can't prevent people from stuffing the ballot box from several
However, I still think the Free Software Way (TM) would be to allow
votes from anyone sufficiently interested to make the effort to vote.

The reason I'm not a developer is not that I don't care about Debian,
it's just that my experience in compiling C programs is limited, and I
still have a LOT of documentation to read and assimilate regarding
include files, shared libraries, Makefiles, control files, policies,
policies, policies (there seem to be so many of those), etc., before I'd
want to spring a new package on an unsuspecting public.

I thought we went through this when we were recruiting beta testers for
bo, when we said that being a developer (= package maintainer) wasn't
the only kind of contribution Debian needed.

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