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I dropped a big, ugly bomb...

There has been some argument on the ICG-D list about the L.A.con IV masquerade rules.

I pointed out that the issues in question are better addressed in the new guidelines revision, and that folks concerned about this should be talking to their BoD rep about the disposition of the draft, now that it's in the BoD's hands.

aramintamd pointed out to the rest of us (not on the Board) that the BoD was not being allowed to act on the submission, and that the topic wasn't going to be introduced until the annual meeting of the membership at Costume-Con 24 in Des Moines.

At which the President got pissy.

To All
When the guidelines issue came up I and the Board decided that it was an
issue that needed to be taken up by the whole membership.
Many people have worked hard on this to include you the members. to give you
a voice in the writing of the guidelines.
It is on the web site so you may read it and make suggestions and help fix
anything that needed to be fixed.
After all that work I felt that you the members should have the final say
not just 16 people.
You voice must and will be heard on this issue.
This is your guild and this issue is important enough for you to have a say
in it.
I have heard how we are wasting time waiting for the general meeting and
should decide at the BOD what we should do about the guidelines.
I say NO
This is not about the day to day business of running the ICG this about you,
and your art form.
How you vote is yours to decide, your vote counts.
So come to the meeting or send in your proxy but vote this is all about you.
C. D. Mami

Now I've got some real problems with this.

C. D. Mami wrote:
> After all that work I felt that you the members should have the final say
> not just 16 people.
> You voice must and will be heard on this issue.
> This is your guild and this issue is important enough for you to have a say
> in it.

'k, Carl, I'm going to say something that's going to irritate you. This isn't specifically about the guidelines project.

The BoD shouldn't operate in a vacuum. I'm not so sure it doesn't, though. I don't like how this implies that our board representatives voting on this issue would happen without member input.

We are a membership organization, not a Fortune 500 corporation. While we are subject to the same corporate regulations that they are, our governance is very different. Our board isn't made up of outsiders, it's made up of members selected to represent the interest of the chapters and their members.

One could argue about large chapters being under-represented, but I'm from one of those large chapters and don't see any point. Our BoD is organized as one chapter, one representative.

Regardless of the issue, our chapter reps should be informing the membership of their chapters of all motions and getting a feel for the members' opinions before voting the overall position of their chapter. I don't know this is happening.

But back to the guidelines.

The guidelines project spent 18 months collecting member (and non-member costumer) input. Based on your rationale for deferring the vote to the annual meeting (which I don't necessarily agree with, I believe the membership has been given ample opportunity to be heard and provide input), you need to charge the chapter representatives with the task of polling their membership and collecting proxies on this issue.

If you would like the annual meeting to be meaningful, the agenda has to be posted far enough in advance that the members can consider the topics, and that agenda has to be provided out to all members at the time of publication. If not, while the vote may be more proportional, it's only in regard to the members present; anyone not present is likely to be just as disenfranchised, their proxy being cast without their input.


I think that covers it.


( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 11th, 2006 04:47 pm (UTC)
So are you running? :-)
Jan. 11th, 2006 06:40 pm (UTC)
No. And I'm not going to say why in public.
Jan. 11th, 2006 08:43 pm (UTC)
If the organization is set up in such a way that the BoD rules on such things, then it's silly not to, no matter how "important" the issue may be. If it wasn't originally presented as a "the membership will vote on the final issuance" thing, then it isn't one, now is it? And yes, 18 months of input while coming up with the new guidelines is more than enough, and seems wholly adequate.
Jan. 12th, 2006 10:17 am (UTC)
What's the contoversy about, rules wise? The LACon rules as linked to certainly look unexceptionable.
Jan. 12th, 2006 10:54 am (UTC)
Three things:

Folks are concerned that the time limits are going to result in a long show; more traditional WorldCon time limits are 60 seconds individual and 90 seconds group.

The choice to not count workmanship awards towards division placement goes against a lot of work we've been doing to make sure that workmanship awards aren't seen as "second class" awards that aren't as important as presentation awards.

The statement "There will be a workmanship award in each division" goes against our standard of not mandating or restricting judging panels in the awards they give. I'm very glad I'm not judging workmanship for this one.
( 5 comments — Leave a comment )