The annual two-week voting period for the Arbitration Committee closed at 23:59 UTC on Monday 14 December. This year, 994 Wikipedians voted, slightly more than last year's total of 984. An alphabetically sorted list of editors who have voted is maintained at the voter log. Twenty-two candidates stood in the election, and nine new arbitrators are expected to begin their terms on 1 January 2010, returning the Committee's numbers to 18.
The 2009 election has been a major departure from its predecessors in the use of the SecurePoll automated, private voting system; this has meant that for the first time the community has not been aware of the running tally. Since the close of voting, the election scrutineers have been checking and certifying the tally. The community has been encouraged to actively identify suspicious voting patterns in the now-concluded ACE2009 voting logs, in the same manner as former ArbCom elections. Election administrator Happy-melonhas stated that the scrutineers' task is "to check each vote for validity – principally, that it was not cast by a sockpuppet in a manner so as to be invalid.... Once this stage is concluded, the scrutineers will quickly verify that there are no obvious flaws in the resulting tally which would indicate a problem in the software; obviously none are expected, but is it reassuring to have [six] pairs of eyes double-check. The results will then be published. The exact wording of the two relevant emails that were sent to the scrutineers is here."
To ensure neutrality, the six scrutineers have been drawn from the ranks of stewards not active on the English Wikipedia: Mardetanha, Effeietsanders, Laaknor, Thogo, Millosh and Erwin. On the publication of this Signpost edition, we keenly await the scrutineers' release of the tally on the election talk page. The tally will be presented in sortable tabular form, with numerical scores for each candidate's "Net" vote, i.e, Support − Oppose, and "Percentage" vote, i.e., Support / (Support + Oppose). The appointments will be formally announced by Jimbo Wales by 21 December (expected date), after community consultation if necessary.
The Signpost congratulates these candidates and offers its thanks to the other 13 candidates for participating in the election. Jimbo Wales is expected to make a formal announcement of the appointments before the next edition of The Signpost. A fuller summary of the election results will be provided in the next edition.
A page for users to provide feedback on the election has been launched, inviting comment and discussion of ways to improve the 2010 ArbCom election. The topics thus far include "election personnel", "the SecurePoll system", "improving instructions to voters", "voting rules", "supplementary voting", and "questions to candidates".
Here are the important dates for the 2009 ArbCom elections:
10 November – Candidate nominations opened and the question period commenced