[openstack-community] Proposal: remove voting on speaking proposals for Barcelona Summit

Florian Haas florian at hastexo.com
Wed May 18 15:58:41 UTC 2016

On 05/18/2016 05:45 PM, Adam Lawson wrote:
>     You submit a talk, you have a say in the overall program. Simple as
>     that. Kind of like you submit patches, you have a say in the direction
>     your project is taking.
> The challenge there my friend is it incentivizes the community to submit
> talks solely for the purpose of gaining influence within the selection
> process. Kind of like submitting patches for spelling/punctuation in the
> OpenStack documentation solely for the purpose gaining voting rights
> during TC elections and ATC status -- hence free Summit pass.

Fair point, which I addressed in my original message. Relevant quote below:

> When I first floated this idea on the track chair mailing list a few
> months ago, Duncan Thomas made this point:
> [Duncan]
>> I think limiting votes only to people who submit talks would lead to
>> people/companies submitting poor talks just to get a vote (gaming the
>> system).
> To which I then replied:
> [Florian]
>> That's a fair point. However, reviewers could separately flag
>> proposals that don't meet certain quality criteria. (*Some* formal
>> criteria could even be checked by computers, not humans.) And there
>> could be a rule that if, say, the majority of a talk's (anonymous)
>> reviewers flag foul play, all the proposer's proposals *and* all and
>> the proposer's votes would be invalidated. I think that would be a
>> fairly strong deterrent. And in order to deter abuse of *that* system,
>> the event of a proposer being thus sin-binned should probably be
>> reviewed by a panel of some description.

> No easy answers for sure. I'm not opinionated strongly either way but
> would support testing the idea of eliminating voting in Barcelona to see
> how it goes. I'm guessing that if it does not go well or have unexpected
> social consequence, the Foundation will have ample opportunity to
> course-correct.

One technical point on that, "testing" would imply that there is data
from Austin that could be compared to data from Barcelona, to judge the
relative quality of the two Summits. I'm not sure if we even have
sufficient data (attendee feedback) from Austin and Tokyo to be able to
determine whether quality improves in Barcelona.

If others think voting is so awful right now that rather than having
another summit with the current system and then switching to another, it
is a better idea to ditch voting now and possibly re-adopt it later,
then I'll be happy to accept that.

I, for one, am not fond of letting go of community involvement, for
concern of never getting it back.


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