[svlug] Explaining the Election

Brian J. Tarricone bjt23 at cornell.edu
Fri Jan 25 15:18:38 PST 2008

Edward Cherlin wrote:
> On Jan 25, 2008 2:31 PM, Brian J. Tarricone <bjt23 at cornell.edu> wrote:
>> Paul Reiber wrote:
>> Given the lack of any governing documents, this group effectively has no
>> rules for operation.  Although, let's not forget who actually has
>> tangible power over the group's operations: people with root on the
>> server, admin access to the lists, control over the domains, etc.
>> They're free to set whatever policies they want, and the membership can
>> do little about it if they don't like it.
> That turns out not to be the case. The membership has a number of
> resources to draw on. Total withdrawal of support is very effective.
> At the very worst, the members can leave, and possibly form another
> organization more to their liking.

True -- I suppose that dovetails with my later comment re: the election 
next month: if the admins don't consider the election valid, those in 
support of it could certainly form a new org.

> Our admins have been given their authority precisely because they have
> demonstrated a) competence, and b) no inclination to abuse that
> authority.

Oh, I don't debate that.  I'm just saying that there's nothing stopping 
them from (ab)using that authority to subvert the elected SVLUG officers 
if they choose to do so.

>> To borrow your own description, Paul, SVLUG is more or less a do-ocracy
>> (plus the IMO mostly-benevolent admin oligarchy).  If some members take
>> it upon themselves to band together and select new leadership outside of
>> your final appointments, it's entirely within their bounds to do so...
>> because, frankly, what's to stop them?  As long as the admins consider
>> the election valid, it's valid.
> The members, since the admins don't want to interfere in the election.

Sure.  Again, I guess I should have been more clear: I was speaking 
mostly hypothetically, simply to point out that the admins are the ones 
who hold real power over SVLUG in its current incarnation (not really 
trying to assign a value judgment to that state of affairs).

>> P.P.S.  I strongly question while I still (sporadically) read this list,
> Do you mean 'why' rather than 'while'?

Sigh, yes.  Brainfart.

>> but I must admit, somewhat ashamed to say, that all these goings-on can
>> be pretty entertaining.
> I'm glad you take it so well. I hope more will follow your example.
> Well, actually I hope we stop the goings-on, of course.

I'm with you on that one...


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