[Haskell-cafe] RE: [Haskell] Proposal: Form a haskell.org committee

Simon Peyton-Jones simonpj at microsoft.com
Mon Sep 6 03:27:35 EDT 2010

Ian et al

| To fix this problem, we propose that we create a "haskell.org
| committee", which is responsible for answering these sorts of questions,
| although for some questions they may choose to poll the community at
| large if they think appropriate.

I think that's an excellent idea.  I think there should be a web page describing what the committee does, who is in it, how to contact it, etc.  I'm sure you intended that.  An annual statement of what money came in and went out would be good practice.

Well the committee also be responsible for the haskell.org web site? 

| We suggest that the committee be composed of 5 representatives from the
| community, with committee members standing down after at most 3 years.
| Each year the committee will appoint one of their members to be the chair.

It's usually helpful to establish a rotation so that everyone knows who is going to stand down when, and to arrange that there isn't a sudden glut one year.  Document the stand-down dates on the committee web page.  In my experience, everyone forgets!

Five might be a little small.

It might be good to allow for a person to be re-elected for a second term if they are willing.  It's a good principle to have rotation, but a pity to lose willing and experienced talent.  But six years is enough.

| As membership of "the Haskell community" is not well-defined, and voting
| would potentially be open to abuse if anyone were able to vote, we
| propose that the committee should choose their replacements from open
| nominations.

I agree with the problem, and I think your proposed solution may do for now, but it's obviously not a robust solution.  I trust you five, but in three years time you may all have stood down!

A possible solution would be to have an "electoral college" of people entitled to vote. It should be easy to become a member of the college: any track record of contributions to the Haskell community, including constructive contributions to Haskell Cafe, would be enough.  Then the college can elect the committee.

It's debatable whether this is worth the bother at this point.  Maybe it would be enough to document on the committee page that we don't regard the nomination process as robust, and if any concern arises we will consider something more substantial.


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