[Spi-private] Publically viewable resolutions and increasing the visibility of board activity

Jimmy Kaplowitz jimmy at spi-inc.org
Tue Jan 2 10:49:18 UTC 2007

On Tue, Jan 02, 2007 at 09:42:17AM +0000, MJ Ray wrote:
> Bdale Garbee <bdale at gag.com> wrote:
> > mjr at phonecoop.coop (MJ Ray) writes:
> > > 1. it lengthens a no-proposals-allowed period before the meeting
> > > again.  This deadline is new this year and is unwelcome.
> >   ...
> > > more notice of meetings (including business)
> >
> > How should I reconcile these two conflicting assertions?
> There need not be a dilemma between publishing the agenda and being
> responsive to the membership.  For example, you could add something
> like a "member questions and requests" item early in the meetings, in
> the style of England's local councils.

I think both Bdale and I interpreted your request for "more notice of
meetings (including business)" as a request to know sufficiently in
advance what proposals will be dealt with at the meeting. The lack of
that notice, for example, seems to have been your objection in the
opensource.org vote which started this discussion. The desire to have
this advance notice, and for that notice to be accurate, means that
proposals received after the notice is submitted cannot be dealt with at
the meeting to which the notice pertains.

This is not a restriction on member participation; members are still
welcome to ask questions and make requests of the board on the mailing
lists at any time and more informally on the IRC channels outside of
meetings. Using these methods and having the firm proposal deadline
ensures the inclusion of all interested members in the discussion and
not merely those who coincidentally chose to attend that given meeting
with no advance notice of a reason to do so.

Of course, members can certainly submit proposals for a meeting agenda
item sufficiently in advance for them to be included in the notice for
that meeting. (I don't know specifically the bylaw details on
resolutions being brought to a vote by the members without the support
of the board, but the board would generally be willing to at least
address most timely proposed agenda items during a meeting, whether or
not they get finally dealt with.) It is also worth noting another
indicator that this is not a ruse to reduce member participation:
namely, the deadline for proposals to be considered at a meeting applies
to board members as well as to other members of SPI. Board members have
no timeline advantage in this regard.

- Jimmy Kaplowitz
jimmy at spi-inc.org

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