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Re: [802SEC] +++ SEC Rules Change Letter Ballot +++ Ballot on SECelectronic balloting

I vote Disapprove.

Some general comments:

Before I can vote on rules changes, I need to see the current rules. The rules on the web are dated March 2001.

Like Tony, I oppose tinkering with the rules without fixing them.

I agree with Tony that any change to the voting ought to delete the option of paper voting.

The change to talks about extending the duration of the ballot. However, there is no language in the existing rules about how that duration is set in the first place. It says only that someone will "determine the minimum duration of the ballot". There is nothing in the rules about the _maximum_ duration, which would be the _actual_ duration. So perhaps the current rules already allow for an extension of the voting period.

The change talks about an extension "if a quorum is not achieved", but I don't know what this means because the existing language doesn't say anything about a quorum. It does say that approval requires a majority of the members. Let's say that there are 13 SEC members and the vote is 6 approve, 1 disapprove. Motion fails for lack of a majority. But is 7 out of 13 votes a quorum? Who knows? If it's a quorum, then (according to the proposed rule) the opportunity to extend doesn't apply.

Even if the language of the change is revised to both clarify the existing rule and to accurately specify the new procedures, I might oppose it on principle. My concern is that the process is like an automatic deadline extension. I am afraid this will make it harder to get any ballot completed promptly.

In the proposed change to 3.6.3, I have no idea of the meaning of the last sentence: "The time after the current plenary by be reduced to 15 days as well for an electronic ballot." [If "by" is replaced by "may", I still don't get it.]

If we are going to tinker with 3.6.3, I don't see how we can overlook a huge problem that has been glaring at us, which is this sentence: "The Executive Committee Vice Chair, (or other Executive Committee member) designated by the LMSC Chair, shall distribute the proposed change to all persons who have attended the current Plenary Session or one of the preceding two Plenary Sessions at least sixty (60) days prior to the next Plenary Session and further; invite and collect comments for presentation to the Executive Committee." WE DON'T DO THIS! Unless we change the rules, or unless we change our habits, we will violate the rules every time we make a rules change. [While we sometimes send a note to stds-802-all, this obviously doesn't satisfy the rule literally, and it doesn't satisfy it in spirit either].

I think that, as an SEC, we ought to put more homework into proposed rules changes before they go to ballot. This would make for a more efficient process.


>I agree with the intent of this change; however, I have to vote Disapprove, as I see no reason why we would ever do anything other than an electronic ballot, now or in the future. In other words, rather than fixing up the text to deal with both paper and electronic ballots, I believe we should fix up the text to remove paper ballots and to make it clear that all balloting that we conduct from here on will be electronic.
>Rationale: There is absolutely no point in incurring the expense & administrative pain of paper balloting given that we have a better, more efficient, and cheaper alternative in the form of electronic balloting. I believe we will never conduct any more paper ballots in the future - I, for one, would not vote to approve expenditure of LMSC funds on a paper ballot, in the unlikely event of one being proposed, and I suspect I wouldn't be the only Exec member with that view. Therefore, we shouldn't complicate our rules by trying to accommodate two mechanisms where one is all that we actually need.
>At 23:28 27/08/2002 -0400, Matthew Sherman wrote:
>>Dear SEC members,
>>Attached you will find the text for an SEC rules change letter ballot on SEC
>>Electronic Balloting.  Note that this letter ballot was originally approved
>>at the Friday March 15, 2002 plenary session, but was never sent out.  I had
>>to regenerate the text to be balloted from the minutes of the March SEC
>>meeting.  It happens there have been some minor updates to the text in
>>question based on more recent rules changes ("1st" has been inserted in
>>front of "Vice Chair").  Also the phrase "(or other Executive Committee
>>member designated by the LMSC Chair)" was not indicated as a change in the
>>March SEC meeting minutes, but is clearly added text.  Finally, I added an
>>editorial comma after "The Chair" in  The text could probably be
>>improved with further such editorial, but I'll leave that for the rest of
>>The scope and purpose of the changes being balloted is as follows:
>>Scope:  To improve the SEC process for electronic balloting.
>>Purpose: To facilitate the SEC consensus process.
>>The ballot opens August 27, 2002 and closes October 28, 2002 12 midnight EDT
>>(remember if you do not vote or abstain it is equivalent to a DISAPPROVE
>>vote).  Buzz, please ensure this gets sent to the "802ALL" email list as
>>well.  WG chairs, if you haven't already done so, please invite your WG
>>members to comment through you.
>> <<SEC e-ballot rules change.pdf>>
>>Matthew Sherman
>>Vice Chair, IEEE 802
>>Technology Consultant
>>Communications Technology Research
>>AT&T Labs - Shannon Laboratory
>>Room B255, Building 103
>>180 Park Avenue
>>P.O. Box 971
>>Florham Park, NJ 07932-0971
>>Phone: +1 (973) 236-6925
>>Fax: +1 (973) 360-5877