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current ballot must be withdrawn per Constitution A.5

Per section A.5 ("Expiry") of the constitution, I must point out that both
John Goerzen's General Resolution regarding non-free, and Anthony Towns's
amended version thereof (which per A.1.3 stands on its own as an
independent GR since John Goerzen did not accept it) have expired.

The entirety of section A.5 reads as follows:

  If a proposed resolution has not been discussed, amended, voted
  on or otherwise dealt with for 4 weeks then it is considered to have been


The Project Secretary has heretofore regarded debian-vote as the only
mailing list or forum in which consitutional activity of this sort is
recognized.  Quoting <http://www.debian.org/vote/howto_proposal>:

  When you've completed your proposal, send it to the debian-vote mailing
  list or directly to secretary@debian.org (who will bounce it to -vote
  anyway). Proposals will not be recognized to any other mailing list or
  email address. This is to prevent the Project Secretary from missing a
  proposal in the huge volumes of mail generaged on some of our lists and to
  prevent him from having to subscribe to each and every list created by the
  Project. Sponsors must also be sent to the debian-vote list or to
  secretary@debian.org in order to be recognized as valid.

(I will concede for the sake of arguement that the wording in the paragraph
above is not exhaustive vis a vis the kinds of "dealing with" that a
resolution can receive per A.5, however my interpretation seems consistent
with the Project Secretary's past practice.  I do not claim to speak for
him here.)

As evidence for my assertion of expiry, I submit:

* John Goerzen's General Resolution saw a Call for Votes on 7 June.
* Anthony Towns's (de facto) General Resolution saw a Call for Votes on 7
* Both GR's were discussed heavily on debian-vote through the month of June
  and into early July, after which discussion was sporadic.  The last
  message in July that was even modestly germane to the proposed GR's was
  made by Hamish Moffatt on 19 Jul <20000719202623.A6554@silly.cloud.net.au>.
  The rest of the month was fairly low traffic, involving only a very
  off-topic flamewar between myself and Craig Sanders, and a couple of
  messages discussing an unrelated GR proposed by Manoj to -project.
* From 27 July to 23 August, there was no traffic on -vote at all.
* The only messages in August had to do not with the subject matter of the
  GR's, but rather when we were ever going to have a vote on them.
* The list fell into silence again, broken by a message from the Project
  Secretary on 22 September declaring his intention to release a ballot in
  one week.

The most generous (smallest) estimate of downtime is 20 July to 22 August,
a period of 38 days.  More than 4 weeks any way you slice it.

There are less generous (larger) estimates of downtime that would disregard
extremely marginal posts made to -vote (including some by me, in all

I therefore ask the Project Secretary to mark both of these amendments as
expired.  I also humbly ask that, in the future, he designate someone to
act in his stead if other obligations call him away from the project for an
extended period, as happened this summer.

It may be helpful to refer to
to confirm my observations, or take issue with me if I have (inadvertently)
misrepresented the factual record.

G. Branden Robinson             |      One man's theology is another man's
Debian GNU/Linux                |      belly laugh.
branden@debian.org              |      -- Robert Heinlein
http://www.debian.org/~branden/ |

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