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[atlarge-discuss] The issue of non-voting panelists

One of the substantial problems which beset last year's panel was the
failure of certain panelists to keep in touch, to vote on important matters
(or any matters), and to be actively involved.

I think one of the issues which we  - as a community - were moving towards
agreement on was the requirement that all panelists participated, remained
involved, and  - in particular - voted on motions.

If a panelist is not prepared to vote on motions, then the Membership should
be prepared to evict that panelist and replace her/him with someone who's
going to actually participate.

I suggest that any panelist who fails to vote in three consecutive votes (or
in 75% of all votes) should face a vote of confidence from the whole

Obviously, if legitimate reasons are provided in advance for not voting,
such as hospitalisation or annual vacation, then that is reasonable -
particularly if a proxy is provided to meet this eventuality.

What is not acceptable is for a panelist to simply not participate.

On this topic, can I make a plea to the incoming Chair, to formalise the
process by which votes are taken, to allow enough time for the general
membership to make informed contributions and properly participate in the

I suggest that, once a Motion has been seconded by another panelist, the
motion is published on the Mailing List and Website, and a time period of
generally one week is allowed before voting commences (but this should
perhaps be flexible).

I also think that all voting records should be published. This could be the
role of a panelist given the Office of Secretary. The Secretary's role would
be to publicise motions and votes, as well as acting as a conduit for all
incoming Committee reports and Recommendations.

But as I say, if a panelist fails to participate properly, they should be
replaced. That should be a decision of the Membership, based on a vote of no

Richard Henderson

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