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Re: First call for votes for the Lenny release GR

On Sun, Dec 14 2008, Russ Allbery wrote:

> Bas Wijnen <wijnen@debian.org> writes:
>> On Sun, Dec 14, 2008 at 12:59:12PM -0800, Russ Allbery wrote:
>>> It's a shame that the vote was handled in the way that it was,
>> Actually, I think the secretary has done a very good job in preparing
>> the ballot.
> I would like to feel that, but unfortunately, I don't think the facts
> support that feeling.  The 3:1 majority part I can understand.  That's his
> job, and whether I agree or not, I can't get upset at him for doing his
> job.  However, there are several other serious irregularities in this
> vote:
> * Why does releasing despite DFSG violations require a 3:1 majority now
>   when it didn't for etch?  It's the same secretary in both cases.  What
>   changed?  I didn't find any of the explanations offered for this very
>   satisfying.

        The proposal we used before is choice 5 in the current
 ballot, and that does indeed have a 1:1 majority like we did
 before. The devil lies in the details (and I have explained the details
 before too) -- which is that we state that the fiormware blob be
 released under a DFSG free licence.  This means we explictly conform to
 the DFSG, Without that clause, in choice 2, we are just accepting any
 firmware blob, with any license, which means that we are allowing for
 the DFSG to be violated

        I do not think we released before with known violations. We
 released with things we strongly suspected as being violations; since
 we strongly suspect the blob was not the preferred form of
 modification, but we do not know for a fact.

> * Bundling the vote against the open opposition of a fairly significant
>   number of people, including some of the people whose amendments were
>   grouped together, is within his power but comes across poorly.  There
>   wasn't much attempt to compromise or discuss this, and I came away from
>   that with a bad taste in my mouth.

        Have we not been discussing this for weeks now? Related options
 belong on the same ballot.  Not doing so allows for strategic voting to
 game the issue. This is not really an opinion piece, this is a known
 flaw of splitting votes where condorcet is used.

        I am sorry about the bad taste in your mouth, but unless you can
 argue how we can guard against gaming the system when we split votes, I
 don't see where we are going with this.

> * One role of the secretary is to interpret the constitution.  The
>   constitution states fairly clearly the process of decision-making
>   for decisions of this type, such as whether a given package violates
>   the DFSG, or how to weigh the implications of the Social Contract.
>   Yet that decision-making process is not reflected in the ballot or
>   in the presentation of the options.  Option 1 is either meaningless
>   or an override of a delegate decision, but the ballot doesn't
>   reflect this.

        While the options are not written by the secretary, and people
 would consider it a gross abuse of power if I wrote things up as I felt
 thy should be written; the proposer could have made the overriding the
 decision of a delegate explicit.

        The decision to override would not need a supermajority, so the
 ballot would not need to be changed.

        Usually, the ballot form is created by the proposer, it contains
 the title of the proposal, as the proposer set it, and any majority

        The ordering is something the secretary decodes, it was done
 chronologically this time around.

>   Option 4 looks equivalent to FD if you look at the
>   decision-making process in the constitution, but the ballot doesn't
>   reflect that.  I think some additional clarity around that would
>   have been very helpful.

        Again, the proposers or seconds could have improved the
 proposal. What does this have to do with the secretary.

> So, no, I think in this case Manoj did a poor job of preparing this
> ballot.  (That doesn't mean that I have any problems with him personally,
> nor do I believe that he did so out of any ulterior motives.  I think he
> made the decisions that he thought were correct.  I just don't think they
> were good decisions.)

        Point 1 has been answered; and again today, point 2 is related
 to not splitting of related proposals or candidates for resolving the
 release into spearate vote while we use condorcet, and point 3 is
 unrelated to decisions I took; heck, I'd love to rewrite proposals
 other people come up with as secretary, and make them "sane"; I can
 just see hows of protest were I to "rectify": or apply "editorial
 changes" to the proposals.

Goodbye, cool world.
Manoj Srivastava <srivasta@debian.org> <http://www.debian.org/~srivasta/>  
1024D/BF24424C print 4966 F272 D093 B493 410B  924B 21BA DABB BF24 424C

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