[llvm-foundation] Voting

Hal Finkel via llvm-foundation llvm-foundation at lists.llvm.org
Wed Jun 29 11:01:31 PDT 2016

----- Original Message -----
> From: "Alex Bradbury via llvm-foundation" <llvm-foundation at lists.llvm.org>
> To: "Renato Golin" <renato.golin at linaro.org>
> Cc: llvm-foundation at lists.llvm.org
> Sent: Wednesday, June 29, 2016 11:02:42 AM
> Subject: Re: [llvm-foundation] Voting
> On 29 June 2016 at 16:22, Renato Golin via llvm-foundation
> <llvm-foundation at lists.llvm.org> wrote:
> > Hi folks,
> >
> > I've been thinking, how we're going to do the Git vote. But more
> > importantly, it would be good to define some guidelines on how we
> > vote
> > for general issues. So far, we have used consensus as our driving
> > force, but the number of developers, projects and companies
> > depending
> > on LLVM is growing a lot, and we're less often reaching consensus
> > now
> > than a few years ago.
> >
> > Sometimes, we reach consensus, but a few dissidents still can't see
> > consensus, and having a vote would go a long way to show consensus
> > has
> > formed. In that sense, we should only vote *after* consensus was
> > formed by considering *all* issues on the list.
> This proposal of course assumes that the LLVM community is to be run
> as a direct democracy. I don't want to distract from your detailed
> proposal, but it seems the desired governance model needs to be
> defined before delving in to the details of how to implement it. Or
> has this discussion taken place somewhere? I'm specifically not
> expressing a view one way or the other. I had assumed the current
> set-up was some combination of BDFL and decisions being taken by
> Foundation board members, but I don't recall this being explicitly
> defined - though it would be good if it was.

I'd like to second this. I don't think that we should focus on a direct-democracy model. Such systems work well only for small groups. Having accountable representatives and leaders is better. A smaller group of accountable decision makers can invest more time in understanding the issues and the alternatives in order to make an informed decision. Accountability can come from elections, from the risk of community fracturing, etc.


> Communities such as
> FreeBSD, Debian, and others obviously have rather more involved and
> fully defined decision procedures.
> To get an indicative view from the LLVM developer community, perhaps
> it would be good enough to set up a Google form inviting people to
> give their name, email, whether they have the commit bit, and their
> 'vote'. The resulting spreadsheet can then be easily analysed. I
> don't
> think there's a way to have the email validated in Google forms (i.e.
> send an email with a confirmation link), which would be be necessary
> to protect against someone theoretically entering false information -
> though in practice this may not be an issue.
> Best,
> Alex
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Hal Finkel
Assistant Computational Scientist
Leadership Computing Facility
Argonne National Laboratory

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