Subject: Re: public? Re: Call for Votes: New OSI-Editors List
From: "Ben Tilly" <btilly@gmail.com>
Date: Tue, 27 Nov 2007 13:35:54 -0800

On Nov 27, 2007 12:45 PM, Zak Greant <zak.greant@gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi Ernie, Greetings All,
>
[...]
> In their role as editors, editors do not raise issues or give input on
> the issues. If an editor has an issue to raise or input to give as an
> individual, then they may not act as an editor for the relevant issue.
[...]

I'm not really happy with this clause.

I find that if I am paying close attention to a discussion, then I'll
have something to say on it.  I'll also be in a better position to
summarize it.  Conversely if I haven't been involved in the
discussion, I'm generally not paying close enough attention to
accurately summarize the points that were made by various people.

My involvement may just have been to ask some clarifying questions, or
else to point out an issue with a particular argument.  I may not have
a strong opinion on the license under discussion, but I'll be asking
myself, "Could someone think that I expressed an opinion?  Should I
stay away from this topic?"

I understand the benefit of avoiding conflicts of interest.  But I'd
prefer to see a clause like, "Editors shall not let their personal
opinions influence their editing.  If doubts are raised about an
editor's ability to be impartial on a particular issue, that editor
shall refrain from editing that issue."

Yes, that's a more subtle judgment call.  But it leaves me free to act
on discussions that I've been following closely.  And the fact that
editing is publicly attributable gives an appropriate check on
editorial abuse.

Ben