Archive talk:Bylaws

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This new Mission Statement will be appropriate for giving to other groups or funders, but useless for giving to legislators, since it's about our activities, not our political beliefs. I guess that would be more like a policy paper. Anyway, I think we can probably take some cues from the old draft for use in the Advocacy section. -- Gavin 22:42, 26 Jun 2005 (EDT)

what do we need to decide?

  • Do we have members or not?
  • where do members come from? How are they defined? what are their privileges and responsibilities
  • do we have chapters? how are they defined? what are their privileges and responsibilities?
  • what is the board? how does it work? where does it come from?
  • how are the bylaws amended?

By Nelson's request, I'm providing some observations on the by-laws that I brought up briefly at the Free Culture administrative meeting that I think might be potentially problematic or could be better fleshed out before we potentially take this to a vote.

First, it seems that there's some ambiguities worth addressing --

  • Article 4, Section 1.2 -- How will the board of directors choose the chair? Majority vote? Consensus?
  • Article 4, Section 1.2 -- Since the position of exec director is so new for National Free Culture, it seems like it'd be good to provision how an executive director would be removed in the same way it's detailed for chapters.
  • Article 4, Section 2 -- The phrase "day-to-day" seems broadly and somewhat vaguely defined. If FC really will be funding the salary of an executive director or otherwise, it seems useful to provide a (non-comprehensive but nonetheless substantial) job description. -- Press inquiries, for example.
  • Can we provide that the board of directors meetings will be transparent (and how they will be?)
  • Can we provide that the executive director will not be a member of the board of directors? (it's small, but worth stating explicitly)

Then, there's a set of concerns I had that discuss what's already in the bylaws

  • Article 3, Section 2 -- So long as a commitment exists to having board meetings more regularly or having ad hoc connection through an irc channel -- it seems good to have the board of directors decide on approving chapters.
  • Article 3, Section 5 -- Similarly, removal seems like something that should be done by the board of directors. Particularly after our discussion pointing out that the removal for inactivity happens anyways through the registration clause.
  • Article 4, Section 2 -- There seems like there might be a conflict whereby the board of directors is given the powers to appoint their own directors and teams, and the executive director is as well. It might create bigger difficulties when these executive positions could be paid. In that case, I think the power to create new committees and executive positions should be given to the board, with the appointing power struck from this section on the executive director.
  • Article 4, Section 2 -- This was discussed during the meeting, but "Executive Director" might give the wrong connotation about the position's role. This debate is to a certain degree semantical, but I think is worth considering.

--Tim 10:53, 30 May 2007 (JST)

Initial Comments (to be continued..)

  • I believe it is important to make clear that the Executive Director (or whatever we're going to call it) cannot be a member of the board.
  • As Discussed at the Harvard meeting, it appears that ED is probably not the best name for the job ((Inter)national Coordinator?)
  • What happens when we do not have sufficient funding and thus do not have an ED? There should be a provision in there for that.
  • I don't agree with the one vote per chapter scenario. What about a chapter that consists of one person versus thirty people? What if those thirty people cannot agree on votes? Also, what about standalone members of the org? We need to come up with a better solution for this, and some eligibility criteria for voting.
  • When voting, we should use a preferential system like one of those that Mako developed [1]
  • Suggestion of allowing others to nominate people for board elections, such as adding in "Current or former members of the organization may nominate someone to run for the board, in which case, the nominee must accept. A candidate may also nominate him or herself to run." in Section 1.1.
  • Why no appeals for chapter removal by the board? I think we need to give the opportunity for at least one appeal.
  • Why will all assets be given to the EFF if the organization dissolves? Just wondering why it's only the EFF..

--Elizabeth18:46, 16 July 2007 (JST)

Politics geek moment: Assume for the moment that the body of voters is composed of chapter representatives. How will the voting take place? Do they get one vote, or as many votes as there are open seats? Or instant runoff voting? Or, god help me, Condorcet voting?? That's a little silly, but in all seriousness I think the voting system should be spelled out in the bylaws.