[IAEP] [Sugar-devel] [wiki bug] Roadmap Sugar Labs - Ambiguity detected on how to make Decisions

James Cameron quozl at laptop.org
Wed May 10 18:27:03 EDT 2017

On Wed, May 10, 2017 at 08:20:22AM -0500, Laura Vargas wrote:
> Thank you both for your interest and suggestions.
> I will research on the "consent agenda mechanism". Hope other board
> members will also research. Clearly we have much to learn.
> In the meanwhile, and if there are no objections in a couple of
> days, I will replace the text in the decisions page of the wiki,
> from:
> "Due to confusion about Sugar Labs governance, during 2016 several
> members of the project not on the SLOB posted motions, but these
> were not seconded, and have been struck out to show they were
> considered by some SLOB members are invalid."

This text was from Dave Crossland just after agreed motion 2016-42,
and was in support of his other edits at the same time that changed
several recorded "failed motions" into "member motions" with

Agreed motion 2016-42 says "While suggestions for motions can come
from anyone in the community, motions should be made by Sugar Labs
oversight board members." and was made at the 2016-07-01 meeting.

Changes made by Dave on this date help to show that the motions were
not failed, but rather they were not proposed by any board member.

I agree this paragraph can be removed; if some explanation of "struck
out" is added instead.  Which your suggested text below does not do.

> To
> "We welcome non-member proposals at the time of a meeting; but they
> require both a proposer and seconder from among the members of the
> board.

I disagree with the wording.  Instead, use the text of agreed motion

> The meeting chairperson has the duty to making it clear when a
> motion is proposed, and who proposed it, making it clear when a
> motion is seconded, not allowing talk on a motion until it is
> seconded, not allowing a change to the motion unless the change is
> both proposed and seconded, initiation, education and preparation of
> the board members."

I don't think this is necessary, and is an imposition on the chair.

It is also the wrong place to define meeting practices; this page is
a list of decisions.

> I hope this sounds reasonable.

No, it doesn't sound reasonable.

On the one hand, I'll presume there have been private discussions that
I'm not a party to, so the following should be taken in light of that.

>From what I have seen, both in the minutes and the public mail lists,
the chair is doing a reasonable job already, but the board members and
visiting community don't have an appreciation of the procedure and the

For instance, in the most recent meeting Caryl said "I believe any
Sugar-Labs member can make a motion for consieration by the SLOB" and
"Actually, all Sugar Labs members have been able to make motions. I
have done it before as have others who were not members of SLOB".

As you know, the procedure had been changed and made clearer in agreed
motion 2016-42.

Yet nobody responded to Caryl to say that the procedure had changed.

As you know, there is ambiguity about definition of "motion",
"suggestion", and "proposal".

Yet again, nobody responded to clarify this ambiguity.

While I could go into a blow-by-blow account of the meeting, it would
be ineffective.

Editing the Wiki as you have suggested will be equally ineffective;
because as far as I can see the people who were at the meeting had not
read the Wiki and had insufficient knowledge of previous decisions and

As D. Joe recently reminded us when describing "consent agenda", there
are steps in any meeting procedure that reveal bad faith, but we
should hope and assume that the board members are acting in good
faith; so what we have left is inadequate preparation and knowledge of

Another reason for not using the Wiki for this; many of those at the
meeting are not active Wiki participants; no recent edits or


p.s. in my opinion, agreed motion 2016-42 might have used "must"
instead of "should".  As it stands, there is a tiny bit of ambiguity.


p.p.s. agreed motion 2016-42 is listed in the minutes of the
2016-07-01 meeting but not in the decisions; a different motion is
listed instead.


James Cameron

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