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Re: quantity of DPL candidates?



martin f krafft writes ("Re: quantity of DPL candidates?"):
> What sort of decision-making are we talking about? We require the
> DPL to sign off on expenses, but this could be solved with
> a (collaboratively generated) budget. What other decisions are in
> the DPL realm? I don't mean the constitutionally assigned roles, but
> those decisions which the DPL wouldn't defer to someone who knows
> better already? For if there weren't many of those, another
> consideration would be just to get rid of the DPL position and
> spread powers wider and closer to where the work is being done.

Well, I agree that it would be nice if the DPL were to delegate a lot
more.  DPLs have historically avoided delegating ad-hoc one-off
issues.  (Also there is not currently a convenient way for the DPL to
find someone interested in and suitable for a particular ad-hoc
delegation.)

I don't think a collaboratively-generated budget answers the
expenditure question in an effective way.  Someone still needs to have
the authority to approve an expense item from a particular budget.
(This could be done with delegation.)

Other examples include authority to ask Debian's legal support
services for advice.  (Ultimately this is almost the same as spending
money, but the political considerations are quite different.)

But there is also the fact that the DPL's very broad powers and strong
legitimacy mean that they are often called on to give an informal
opinion in circumstances where a board member who needed approval of
other board members to do anything would have less authority.

For example, longstanding teams in Debian generally receive a formal
delegation by the DPL.  Because those teams formally receive their
authority via the DPL, the DPL is a principal method by which those
teams can be held to account.

As another example, the DPL is in a position to make public statements
of opinion which can reasonably be taken by both outsiders and
insiders as fairly authoritative (although perhaps not entirely
definitive).

Ian.


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