[Discussion] Explicitly switch to simple majority for new members

Fernando Frediani fhfrediani at gmail.com
Mon Oct 25 15:27:06 PDT 2021

Hello Adrian and all

Just to summarize a few points I have put in the other message and add a 
few others:

- Any votes should be considered, either voting for someone new onboard 
or any other important topic.  In my view it is a duty and expected of 
an active member to vote on all or most decisions, even if their opinion 
is abstention.

- Majority of votes should always be of the whole electorate or people 
with voting rights, specially when a new member is to be come onboard. 
For this type of vote is it necessary that the fully majority cast their 
votes in order to not leave doubt a new person that will be able to vote 
on future decisions.

- Simple majority is still a majority of all possible voters or whole 
electorate. That is to differentiate when a *absolute or qualified 
majority (2/3 of the all voters)* is necessary, for example to change 
the current rules which is a major change to any institution or project, 
probably the most important vote that can happen.
Therefore there is nothing wrong with rule 6in my view. If changed to 
what suggested you will open a door to get new members (so people who 
can vote and influence the direction of the project), by not necessarily 
with the consent of all other current voters. This in my view is risk to 
the project and can make it easier for a possible take over depending 
how some votes are conducted. Not saying that is easy but makes is 
easier for that to happen.
Rule 6 is correct in asking simple majority (50% + 1) and not 2/3 which 
is fair enough for each of that cases. If making 50% of only those who 
voted then it makes weaker the onboard process of someone that will have 
the power to influence the project long term.

- Agree that depending on the vote a minimal time should be given, and 3 
weeks that you propose is a significant and more than enough time for 
everybody to vote. I would say that 2 weeks is good enough by default 
with the possibility of the person who started the vote to extend it for 
another 2 weeks should the discussion around the topic requests more 
time, but 3 weeks does as well if most think otherwise.

- For other less important decisions that could be a minimal quorum and 
that is good so make sure the decisions cannot be taken by a too short 
amount of people, but for getting a new member onboard that must be 50% 
+1 of all voters (regardless if all voted or not) given the importance 
that a new voter may have to the project long term.

Best regards

On 25/10/2021 17:38, Adrian Schmutzler wrote:
> Hi,
> in addition to the question of inactive membership as presented by Daniel,
> we also discussed about the mode of voting for new OpenWrt members during
> our last virtual meeting.
> Note that the following discussion is solely limited at voting on new
> members; it's not concerned with any other votes.
> As many have noticed already, it's become quite hard to do votes when an
> absolute majority is needed; it mostly works eventually, but requires time
> and getting on people's nerves to have them vote.
> In this context, I've always favored the approach of a simple majority where
> we use the majority of votes instead of requiring the majority of all with
> voting rights.
> Technically, rule no. 6 states explicitly the a "simple majority" is needed
> for adding new members. Note that this by definition means that we already
> have the majority of votes in our rules.
> Nevertheless, from my experience - and in contrast to the very words written
> there - this has always been treated as if an absolute majority was
> required.
> I'd thus like to change/clarify rule no. 6 in order to actually have new
> members qualified by a majority of votes given, a "simple majority" and not
> by an absolute majority as it was practiced so far.
> While I plan to propose a specific change later, this is only meant to
> trigger a discussion and share your view on it - it's _not_ a vote yet.
> Note that this should be seen as orthogonal to the discussion raised by
> Daniel, and will lead to separate votes eventually.
> A relative majority vote needs a fixed timeframe to be fair. I aim at
> proposing three weeks for that; this should be doable also during vacation,
> holidays on so on and is still short enough to keep track.
> Since we already have the "simple majority" in the rules, I'd personally
> simply add a sentence stating the required interval. I would not change the
> first sentence at all but simply use the vote to agree that "simple
> majority" really means what it says.
> Finally, I wonder whether we should consider introducing a quorum for these
> votes; I could imagine that a new member would only be accepted if we e.g.
> received votes from at least 25 % of the members (and the majority votes
> yes, of course). I don't have a definite opinion there, so please share your
> views.
> I'm planning to keep this discussion open for 1-2 weeks.
> Thanks
> Adrian
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