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Subject: Re: Quorum required for good standing; was RE: [chairs] Info forchair setup of Kavi TC areas


I was not aware that this issue had been "clarified."

| you say:
| > Note that in mail votes (including email), a majority is a
| > majority of all of those casting a vote -- not necessarily a
| > majority of the entire membership. 
| That was possibly true in previous versions of the TC
| process. Currently this has been clarified to avoid ambiguities,

Heh.  Really?

| and the TC process nowadays says:
| "For the purposes of mail vote counting, quorum is constituted by the
| whole TC membership."

Quorum has nothing directly to do with vote counting; they are
different concepts.  The sentence "quorum is constituted by the
whole TC membership" is unnecessary and probably meaningless.  A
quorum is the minimum number that has to be present to transact
business.  In email, everyone is always "present."  There is no
way for anyone *not* to be present.

|  -- The reasoning behind this is that the whole 
| membership is always available and present for email votes.

Yes, that's what I said in the first place.  This was perfectly
clear before the "clarification."  Now it's not so clear...  For

| What is still not clear to me is whether in a 10 person TC, given,
| let's say, 3 abstentions, are 4 positive votes enough to pass, or
| are 5 positive votes required no matter what. I guess because I've
| never understood whether abstentions are counted as negative votes
| or simply as no-votes-that-reduce-the-quorum-count.

Abstentions are not votes.  They mean "present and not voting."
They are unrelated to a quorum count, because they don't make
anyone more present than they would have been otherwise.  You
establish a quorum by counting those present, not by counting
those voting.  Proof: We regularly establish the presence or
absence of a quorum in meetings in which no votes are cast.

A simple majority vote means that the number of "yes" votes is
greater than the number of "no" votes.  This is an extremely
simple rule.  In the case you cite, 4 yes votes versus 3 no votes
is majority approval even if the group has a thousand members and
all the rest of them abstain (or don't vote, which in email is the
same thing, because in email all the members are present).

Note that the alternative interpretation would require a far
greater level of approval in email than in an ordinary meeting.
It would make email voting by common consent impossible, thus
seriously damaging our ability to operate.

I think that the "clarification" cited above is a bad idea and
should be removed.  Robert's was perfectly clear on this subject.
It didn't need improving.


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