This has been an interesting election. I’ve talked about previous ones before, and to be honest this one has felt a little bit of a let-down. I do wish that there were more candidates on offer: while this isn’t a criticism of the quality of people standing, I think they tend to represent a relatively narrow set of Fedora developers and users.

Anyhow, I’ve voted. I’m not going to disclose who I voted for or why, but here are the guiding principles I used:

  1. I have voted in preference of those who answered the questionnaires and turned up to town hall IRC. Even where I’ve disagreed with a candidate’s stance, I have voted in preference of them over those who didn’t answer questions at all. I have much sympathy for those like Nicu who have expressed similar concerns, and I congratulate those candidates who participated fully.
  2. I have zero-voted those candidates who have encouraged supporters to game the voting system. I don’t mind tactical voting as a personal decision, but I draw the line at strategic voting. To quote Wikipedia, if this became common place then “the tactical voters would have a significant advantage over the rest of the electorate”. I wish to discourage this behaviour by explicitly tactically voting against those who encourage it. ‘Nuff said.
  3. I (would) have down-voted candidates whose advertising was too obnoxious. The time to canvass for support is before the elections. I don’t particularly want to hear the “recommendations” of representatives of certain sub-projects/supporters of certain candidates during the elections. I believe each candidate should have equal opportunity before the electorate; c.f. remarks at 1) about turning up to town hall / answering the questionnaires.
  4. I have voted up those candidates who expressed a positive vision of Fedora, particularly those who mentioned the social constructs of the project as well as the technical.
  5. I have voted up those candidates whose positive vision of Fedora particularly fits with my own 🙂

I think the period over F16 and F17 is going to be crucial for Fedora. We’re just at the start of hitting the road with Gnome 3, and the developments that are coming in 3.2 are tremendously exciting. Without excluding KDE and the other desktops, Fedora is going to be delivering an incredibly smooth and – dare I say it – designed experience to the end user, and clear leadership in this regard is going to be imperative. The people sitting on FESCo and the Project Board will be more important than ever, so clearly having the right people there is paramount.