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Re: All DPL candidates: DPL Term lengths and limits?

Hi Brian,

On 27/03/14 at 19:54 -0400, Brian Gupta wrote:
> I know this has been raised in elections past, but any thoughts on the
> current one-year DPL terms, and unlimited terms allowed? If thoughts
> are geared toward change do you have any plans to actively try to
> change the status quo?
> I ask because it seems that a lot of energy is devoted to the election
> every year that might be directed towards other parts of the project.
> One idea that I thought showed promise was the idea of two year terms,
> but at the ~10.5 month mark the standing DPL had to confirm they were
> serving the second half of their term, or an election would
> automatically be triggered.
> Obviously any changes discussed/proposed would not impact this election.

I agree that a lot of energy is spent on DPL elections every year.
However, I believe that this energy is mostly not lost: a lot of good
ideas emerge from debian-vote@ discussions.

The duration of DPL terms has been discussed several times, and I'm not
convinced that there's much to gain by moving away from the current
scheme, due to the added complexity of a reconfirmation process (either
only by the current DPL, or using a vote).

What we could try to do, though, is to make the yearly election process
more efficient. Currently, it spans over 6 weeks, with one week for
nominations, 3 for compaigning, and 2 for voting. We could reduce that
to 3/4 weeks, with:
- election-3 weeks: deadline for nomination (without an explicit start of
  nomination period, other than a mail from the secretary announcing the
  general planning of the election)
- from election-3w to election-1w: campaign
- then, one week for voting.

The 3-week campaign period is longer than our default discussion period
for GRs (2 weeks). I don't think that there's much to gain by having an
additional week here.

The 2-week voting period made sense when the Constitution was written,
as intermittent internet access was much more likely back then. But
today, it's probably less justified.

Something that I'd also like to see in future elections is stricter
deadlines for platforms and rebuttals: I believe that the ability to
prioritize so that deadlines are met for important tasks is a required
skill for DPLs, and I find it strange that again this year, the
publication of platforms and rebuttals was delayed by several days. Also,
it raises questions of fairness between candidates when one platform is
made public before the others are received.


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