[Owasp-leaders] Please provide a status update to the membership

Bev Corwin bev.corwin at owasp.org
Thu Oct 16 00:43:08 UTC 2014

I encourage the board to look into the issues, and also support extending
elections deadlines in order to allow everyone to vote.


On Wed, Oct 15, 2014 at 8:15 AM, Andrew van der Stock <vanderaj at owasp.org>

> Michael and the Board,
> I write to you formally to request a status update on the global OWASP
> Board of Directors election process, in particular, I implore the
> current Board to take affirmative action to investigate and manage a
> resolution to the technical hitches in membership and balloting, and
> if necessary delay the election, so that all eligible members can
> vote. There is no activity on the Board list to address this issue,
> and this, too, needs to be addressed.
> Members need to have trust of the integrity of the balloting
> (enfranchisement) and voting processes. There are rules posted
> regarding the process and deadlines, and for at least some (and
> possibly many) members, these deadlines have been missed by the OWASP
> Foundation. There is no current membership list. Members have expired
> and not been renewed or processed and have missed out on receiving
> their vote to the election. It is entirely possible that some of the
> candidates, through no fault of their own, are not in good standing.
> We just don't know.
> The only semi-official message in relation to my queries so far is
> "please don't be inflammatory". That is simply not good enough. I am
> not sledging the ops team - that is not my intent - but I am saying
> there is an critical issue and it is not being managed or communicated
> properly, and that requires Board oversight.
> In Australia, we recently had to send an entire state back to re-vote
> their senate because our electoral commission lost 1300 votes, which
> was more votes than the winning margin. I don't ever recall any open
> source project or Foundation ever having this type of problem before.
> I hope that it's a small issue that can be addressed in a timely and
> comprehensive fashion.
> Please as a matter of urgency, please work out and communicate with
> all the members, (and not just those on the leaders list):
> * What is the Board's position on challenges to the election,
> postponing or delaying the vote to get the membership and balloting
> right, or doing a re-run?
> * Were renewal notices sent out to expiring and expired members in a
> timely fashion to make the September 30 renewal eligibility deadline?
> * If not, will OWASP be e-mailing or making contact with all expired
> members to see if they wanted to renew and give them a vote in the
> election? If so, when will this occur? Will it occur by the time
> voting closes?
> * Are all current Board candidates in good standing? If not, will the
> Board reach out to the candidates in question, and offer them back
> dated honorary membership to comply with the bylaws? Or will they be
> ineligible to stand?
> * Are all membership renewals (paid, lifetime, and honorary) submitted
> prior to September 30 now processed?
> * If so, is there an up to date membership list that does not date
> back to April 8, 2014? Can this be added to the OWASP Board 2014
> elections page?
> * As the CRM process wasn't working for some time, what steps are the
> Board putting into place to ensure that it is fixed and monitored for
> the next election?
> These questions have to be answered. No answer is simply not an
> option. I don't mind if you take these on notice and reply in pieces,
> but please communicate frequently, openly and honestly with us.
> I know the vote is open until next week, but I feel that even if there
> are only a handful of members piping up on the Leaders mailing list
> today, the CRM process has been broken for at least two months, which
> covers about 15% of members. It may have been broken as far back as
> April 8 when the membership list was seemingly last generated, which
> covers around 45-50% of the members.
> Simply enrolling those who pipe up in one venue misses those who don't
> hang out on the Leaders list and disenfranchises those who might have
> wanted a say in OWASP's future. If this is actually a small issue, it
> should be easy to determine: compare July, August's and September's
> membership totals with that from the year before. If the totals are
> reduced, then there is a problem of a known magnitude. But without an
> accurate and up to date membership list, we cannot determine if there
> are disenfranchised members or how many have been potentially
> disenfranchised.
> I gave the ops team nearly two month's notice that something wasn't
> right, and stayed in fairly constant communication during that time. I
> even gave a heads up about my fellow candidates, who I sincerely hope
> have their membership sorted so OWASP members have a geographically
> varied and interesting selection of candidates to choose from.
> I've been here since very nearly the beginning, I don't think I've
> ever seen such disarray in our internal processes, especially such key
> processes that directly elect the Board.
> I implore the Board to take this very seriously. Please communicate
> clearly and frequently with us on next steps. If the Board or the
> Foundation needs time - more time than there exists until the end of
> voting, I am more than willing to give the benefit of the doubt to
> ensure that we have an open, transparent membership and voting system
> with integrity for a vote to be open to all members, not just those
> unaffected by the technical glitches. I can't speak for the other
> candidates, but please ask them too. I'd rather this be done right.
> I am reachable on +61 451 057 580 if you want a chat, but I am UTC+11,
> which makes it tricky during US business hours.
> thanks,
> Andrew
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