Re: AB size [Was: Re: Is strategic voting a problem? - was RE: Don't disclose election results]

On Sun, 08 Jun 2014 22:28:34 +0200, Arthur Barstow <>  

> On 6/8/14 9:07 AM, Charles McCathie Nevile wrote:
>> For the record I still don't support notably increasing its size.
> What is your definition of `notable` here? Is 12 or 18 or 24 ok?

The bigger it gets, the worse the problem of a large AB gets. It's not  
pure mathematics, it's social interactions. I don't think the AB should  
get any bigger.

>> I do support moving as much as possible of what it does to the AC at  
>> large, or community groups, and making the AB's work as transparent as  
>> possible (this allows AC reps to check that the people they trust  
>> really *are* representing them).
> What specific role/task cannot be handled by the AC and why?

Whatever W3C staff do not feel comfortable sharing with the membership at  
large as the first place they consult.

Because instead of getting advice that the membership thinks is given by  
people who collectively represent them, staff get it from people they the  
staff themselves select by asking individuals.

While they are likely to ask smart people, my experience is they are  
likely to ask a less representative subset than "people elected by the  
whole AC". This puts pressure on AC reps to do more work that they had  
delegated to a group they trust and vote for. It has also been less than  
successful - when they followed this process to deal with HTML licensing  
last year, a delay of months in such private consultation got us from one  
formal objection to half a dozen…

>> I think it is also important that the AB make a significant commitment  
>> to be available, that AC reps at large do not and should not have to  
>> make.
> (I guess I'll have to wait for my `secret decoder ring` to arrive on  
> July 1 to try to understand why the entire Membership shouldn't be privy  
> to info shared with such a tiny subset of Members.)

There is very little that is not shared with the members through the  
minutes. But in many cases W3C still doesn't seem comfortable going  
straight to the AC. Maybe they want smaller inboxes, or they want the AC  
to have smaller inboxes. Fortunately that seems to be changing, and we may  
see the role of the AB decline substantially.

BUT the AC may *want* the AB to take responsibility for doing work, to  
reduce the amount of work each AC member needs to do - as Dave Singer  
said, the accepted responsibility is a valuable feature.


Charles McCathie Nevile - web standards - CTO Office, Yandex         Find more at

Received on Monday, 9 June 2014 18:59:10 UTC