@Andreas -

I am serving as an election facilitator in this process. That means I
volunteer to organize the election, but not that I have any rank or power
to set rules or to interpret the process. I have read what I can, and
talked to people, and I can probably answer easy questions about the
election and the nature of the board. I cannot give any authoritative
answer to deep questions like the one you asked.

My perspective is that no one can directly answer your question - not even
the WMF board itself. Whatever else the WMF board is legally, it is also
accountable to the Wikimedia community and must align itself to Wikimedia
community culture every three years or otherwise it seems positioned
because of this election structure to be completely replaced with radical
quickness. If the WMF board takes a position that conflicts with the
Wikimedia community then it could be elected out if the community wants to
correct the perspective. There are no other institutions like this anywhere
that elect 5 of ten board members then appoint the other 4, and have no
permanent touchstone with the board or institution itself. The board was
designed to be elected by Wikimedia community control from inception - 3
directly elected, 2 by authorized organizations, and those 5 appoint
another 4 and they better make a choice the community likes to fulfill
election promises.

If I were to answer your question, I would say to call this process an
election. It was intended to be an election at its founding. The community
of voting organizations and Wikimedia community stakeholders perceive it as
an election, even if some individuals have questions. The nature of the
board is to originate from elected approval from the Wikimedia community
and their closely watched representatives. People can imagine nuance in the
word "election" if they like but I do not know of a better word to call
this than "election". I think it is good to call the community selected
members "elected", despite what happened, and good for the community to
keep rather than divest the power it has always recognized and claimed to
elect the WMF board.

The reason why it is hard to answer your question is because you are asking
a legal question, and Wikimedia processes are designed to be human
understandable even if less legally precise. In human terms, "election" is
what this is called and how it should be imagined. I do not think that
anyone benefits from trying to legally analyze this and instead people
should emphasize the humanity of the process and build the precedent of
what this means in simple, human terms that everyone accepts as a cultural
norm. "Election"

yours,





On Wed, May 4, 2016 at 8:36 AM, Gerard Meijssen <gerard.meijs...@gmail.com>
wrote:

> Hoi,
> There is a difference between your formality and what actually happens. The
> board is unlikely to not accept a chosen representative. I wonder if it
> ever did. Given the quality of the people who can be chosen from, do you
> really expect this to happen and consequently what is it what you want to
> achieve except for airing your formality?
> Thanks,
>       GerardM
>
>
> On 4 May 2016 at 12:58, Andreas Kolbe <jayen...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> > On Tue, May 3, 2016 at 12:43 PM, Lane Rasberry <l...@bluerasberry.com>
> > wrote:
> >
> > > Hello,
> > >
> > > As of now, 13 of 42 eligible organizations have voted in the 2016
> > chapters'
> > > election for 2 of 10 Wikimedia Foundation seats on the board of
> trustees.
> > >
> >
> >
> > Lane,
> >
> > A procedural question: Is the chapters' vote binding on the board, or is
> it
> > the same as for the three community board seats, where the community
> > members selected in the community vote are merely recommendations that
> the
> > sitting board is free to accept or reject?
> >
> > If the winners' actually joining the board is dependent on the sitting
> > board's approval of these candidates, then it's not really a chapter
> > "election" for those board seats: it would be more precise to speak of
> the
> > chapters' vote as a vote to identify chapter-recommended candidates for
> > those two board seats.
> >
> > While that's more clunky – if that's what it really is, then I think it's
> > important that we use language that accurately reflects the process by
> > which community- and chapter-selected candidates end up on the board.
> >
> > Best,
> > Andreas
> > _______________________________________________
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-- 
Lane Rasberry
user:bluerasberry on Wikipedia
206.801.0814
l...@bluerasberry.com
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