Mon 18 Apr 2016 11:24AM

Clarify discussion levels as amendment to constitution

PP Pirate Praveen Public Seen by 336

Add a new article after "basic principles".

Article 2: Decision making
1. There three levels of discussions, wider public, associate members (includes permanent members), permanent members
2. Membership is not necessary to participate at the wider public level.
2.1 This allows us to get maximum input an any discussions.
2.2 This allows anyone to participate in our discussions before they join us.
3. Any person can veto/block a proposal if it is against basic principles.
4. No blocks is a green signal to proceed. Those who disagreed need not participate in implementation of the proposal.
5. If there is a block in wider public, it may be moved to associate member level and then to permanent member level.
6. We need approval to be a permanent member because we cannot remove a permanent member once accepted. Most organizations use this route to suppress dissent.

Suggest changes, needs approval from permanent members for it to be effective. Starting it here for widest comments.


Pirate Praveen Mon 18 Apr 2016 2:10PM

@ambadyanands how about we revisit this when we are bigger, say 50 permanent members? To be a permanant member, you need to be an associate member for at least 6 months and endorsement by 2 permanent members. I like to give maximum power to individuals as it is usually individuals with conviction who stand up for principles not the majority. By giving power to majority, we make it more likely to be corrupt, because honest people will get thrown out first. Just look around you and study any organization that is corrupt. See the state of AAP today (I don't see it as an exception). Yogendra Yadav and Prashant Bhushan got expelled because they dared to challenge Arvind Kejriwal.


Pirate Praveen Mon 18 Apr 2016 2:13PM

@vidyut it is completely wrong to say we failed last attempts because of exploiters. First time, all initial members except me resigned because we could not tolerate one person criticizing us. Second time, no one wanted to be a permanant member. Nothing to do with exploiters.


Pirate Bady Mon 18 Apr 2016 2:17PM

@praveenarimbrathod i hope i'm convinced, need some time to think. will make my decision clear if we reach a voting stage.


Vidyut Mon 18 Apr 2016 2:19PM

Well, what you are essentially saying is that we let an organization fail because of one person. Who was not even an initial member or permanent member or whatever.

If anything, our history proves the perils of this gated entry system and it is the one thing that persists through our new attempts. It is much better to trust and withdraw if breach of it than begin with a default of mistrust in order to maintain some hypothetical virtue of never removing anyone.


Pirate Praveen Mon 18 Apr 2016 2:30PM

@vidyut no, only if a permanent member vetoes, who remained an associate member for at least 6 months and got endorsed by two other permanant members. I think that is enough safe guard to know if some one is genuine.

When random person vetoes, it goes to associate level, if there is a veto, then it goes to permanent level and only if there is also a veto we reach this 'exploitation' stage.

And this is not a hypothetical virtue, but the norm for suppressing dissent all around us. I have personal experience of it in an activist group, how I was thrown out, along with others who dissented. Majority does not make it right.

There is use of dissent written in constitution, if it can be easily suppressed.


Pirate Praveen Mon 18 Apr 2016 2:34PM

@vidyut you can look around and see almost all systems the way you describe. It is not enough to say we are good folks so we can't be corrupted. The system we design has to protect dissent if we truly want to be democratic. By protecting dissent systematically, we have the best safe guard to prevent corruption.


Vidyut Mon 18 Apr 2016 2:47PM

@praveenarimbrathod The idea that because someone got kicked out of a manipulative group means we have to act like that is absurd. We can simply have something like a 75% vote to kick someone. If 75% people want a person out, then I think it is in the larger interest of the organization to remove them. Or set it even higher. 90%?

What will you do if someone disruptive gets in with elections around the corner? Shouldn't be too tough to act nice and con two people into voting them in. So what? Dissolve party and restart with candidates already registered for elections? Allow the person to speak as a member of the party things that sabotage us? And of course these things happen. Sabotage is a part of politics. The idea that you can't remove anyone and would rather restart the organization as a fresh name and maintain 3 domains works while you aren't registered and have stationery and banners and bank accounts.

But we have discussed all this. I am just repeating arguments from years ago.


[deactivated account] Mon 18 Apr 2016 9:11PM

@praveenarimbrathod ""how about we revisit this when we are bigger, say 50 permanent members?"" --
I don't think it's a good idea.. We all have met each other and know each other quite well.. And I think it's safe to say we trust each other enough to agree that none of us(active members) have any intention of messing things up within the group.. So it's best We reach a conclusion regarding this topic now than later .. Cuz once we get bigger and better, there WILL be people who would try to sabotage our group.. And keeping the current veto system in mind, infiltrating the group would be the easiest method to sabotage our efforts.. I'm not saying I have a solution to this, but we do need to resolve this at the earliest.


Balasankar C Sat 4 Jun 2016 5:33AM

The system we design not only has to protect dissent, but also to protect the integrity of the group. Even though majoritarianism has proven to be used to suppress dissent, I don't see how a system based on voting (the one we have now) can do without it.

I like @ambadyanands 's suggestion about X% of disagreement being counted as a veto. Also, block should not be applicable only to basic principles. It should be applicable to all decisions that uses the group's resources - whether it be name, image, goodwill or credibility. :)

In these perspectives, we have to revisit Article 2, Subsections 4 and 6. I don't think anyone being allowed to use collective's name is a good idea.If members of Indian Pirates voted and rejected some idea, how the hell can it be presented as Indian Pirates's ? Even though it is mentioned to "add differentiating part" to basic principles, I don't think it will have much impact. It is the collective's name that gets familiarized to people, no the full list of basic principles.

IMO (will be changed on convincing), forks MUST NOT use the collective's name.


Pirate Praveen Sat 4 Jun 2016 6:25AM

@balasankarchelamat people know Communist Party of India (Marxist) is different from Communist Party of India. Even if we wanted, we can't prevent such forks.

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