This guide is intended to serve as a guide for those who wish to get a little bit of the detail but don't want to go fishing around for it and for those who might need a bit more background in order to understand the discussion and candidates.
Who to vote for
Strong Endorse: Courcelles, DGG, GorillaWarfare
Endorse: AGK, Drmies, Joe Roe
Also Endorse: Lourdes, Mkdw, Robert McClennon, SilkTork
Not endorsed: Isarra, Kelapstick
Do not vote for: Fred Bauder
Endorsements are made based on a consideration of their track record as well as their platform and answers to questions. Endorse and Strong endorse are the six best candidates in my mind (the number of open seats). Because we use an approval election also endorse candidates are also worth supporting should you choose to endorse more than six candidates - which I will be doing. The top six candidates are chosen based off a combination of the strength of their candidacy and a further subjective evaluation of what combination of candidates benefit the Arbitration Committee as a whole.
ArbCom: Short for Arbitration Committee
Arbitration Committee: Wikipedia's last resort to resolve disputes with editor conduct
Arbitrator: A person who serves on ArbCom
ArbCom mailing list Could refer to one of the several email groups used by the committee to receive correspondence and coordinate with each other via email. The use of this list is an issue in this election.
Functionary: People who are Check Users or Oversighters. They're either former arbitrators or people selected by ArbCom to hold those bits
Functionary's mailing list: An email group for functionaries
Bit: Someone who has permissions, like an administrator or functionary, to do things ordinary users of the encyclopedia cannot
Permission: Another word for Bit.
Check User: People who can look at sensitive and identifying information, like registered user's IP addresses, for purposes of investigating things like sock users.
Oversight: People who can suppress deleted content
Administrator: Users who can perform special actions, like banning users or deleting (but not suppressing) content
Sysop: Just another term for administrator
Wikimedia Foundation: The non-profit foundation that supports Wikipedia and the development of the software this and many other Wiki sites runs on
ACE: Short for Arbitration Committee Elections
RfA: Short for Request for Adminship
Candidacy summed up in one word: Experienced
Experience and positions of trust held: Elected twice before to ArbCom, after which he maintained checkuser and oversight, he joined in 2010 and became an administrator that very same year. He's also a global rollbacker across Wikimedia projects.
Your candidate if... you like content editors as arbitrators.
The Good: The reigning WikiCup champion, providing tangible evidence of the depth of his content creation.
The Bad: Married to a WMF employee whose work has overlapped with ArbCom
Candidacy summed up in one word: Reformer
Experience and positions of trust held: DGG registered in 2006 and was one of the wave of 2007 administrators. He has been a continually serving arbitrator since 2014 and has held the Check User and Oversight permissions during that time. He founded and continues to be a host in the Teahouse.
Your candidate if... you want an experienced and active editor with slightly inclusionist tendencies
The Good: Experienced arbitrator, who has remained involved during his tenure in many content and project areas of the encyclopedia. Retired librarian.
The Bad: Can be too strong in the belief that their actions are the right ones
Candidacy summed up in one word: Feminist
Experience and positions of trust held: Joining in 2006, she became active in 2010 which is the same year she became an administrator. By 2013 she had been elected to the first of two consecutive terms as an arbitrator, from which she has took the Check User, joining the Oversight permission she had been granted a few months prior; she has held both permissions since.
Your candidate if... you want someone committed to making Wikipedia a place that welcomes people who aren't men and manages to be a relatively uncontroversial arbitrator
The Good: Actively engages her critics. Is open and honest about the lens with which she views disputes. Takes what appears to be an above average amount of abuse in stride.
The Bad: Not much that I can find
Candidacy summed up in one word: Judgement
Experience and positions of trust held: After joining in 2006, AGK became an administrator the following year. He was appointed a checkuser in 2011 and then served as an arbitrator from 2012-13 and 2014-15. He retained the oversight permission after leaving ArbCom.
Your candidate if... you want a steady experienced arbitrator to return to the committee.
The Good: Previous experience. Shows thoughtful reflection of how ArbCom operates, why that is, and how it appears from the outside and can explain those differences in a way that builds bridges between the greater community and ArbCom.
The Bad: Following last term on ArbCom took extended break from all of Wikipedia. Upon return jumped basically right away into the deep end of the administrator's pool of problems, e.g. Arbitration Enforcement
Candidacy summed up in one word: Anti-Harassment
Experience and positions of trust held: Joined in 2007 and become an admin in 2011 2 years as an arbitrator and continued on as a checkuser and oversighter.
Your candidate if... You want someone savvy enough and willing to work in politically contentious content areas
The Good: Experienced content editor, with several Featured Articles to his name. Regularly edits (though does not normally use the administrator tools) in the American Politics content area.
The Bad: Perhaps not as technically astute as some other candidates. Brash personality isn't for everyone. He thinks that the tide should roll.
Candidacy summed up in one word: Consensus
Experience and positions of trust held: Joe waited over a decade to become an administrator having joined in 2006 but only joined the ranks of sysop last year.
Your candidate if... you want an administrator who has not previously served on ArbCom and believes that consensus and dispute resolution main occurs outside of ANI
The Good: Strongly endorsed by many high profile editors, including former candidate Doug Weller.
The Bad: Given lack of prior work in many of ArbCom's areas would have perhaps the largest learning curve of any candidate
Candidacy summed up in one word: New
Experience and positions of trust held: Lordes became an admin just this year (though she did not accept the bit at first) after joining Wikipedia in 2015,
Your candidate if... you want a newly appointed administrator and veteran content creator who has not previously served on ArbCom
The Good: Several Featured Article & Lists to her name.Works hard to communicate in, and has experience at, several administrator noticeboards.
The Bad: "Only" three years in the project. Long absence in the past year, which occurred immediately after passing RfA. Concerns about ability to have time to perform the role of Arbitrator.
Candidacy summed up in one word: Transparency
Experience and positions of trust held: Joining in 2006, he became an admin in 2013 before being elected to a 2 year term on the Arbitration Committee in 2016, where he has taken the Check User and Oversight permissions
Your candidate if... you want a current arbitrator who has put transparency at the center of their platform.
The Good: Fairly uncontroversial tenure on ArbCom. Genuine desire to improve ArbCom transparency. Seems to enjoy the role more than many other sitting arbitrators.
The Bad: Somewhat inconsistent activity.
Candidacy summed up in two words: More arbcom
Experience and positions of trust held: Robert joined in 2005 and over the years has become a page mover and a new page reviewer, where he was a one time leader of the project being elected its coordinator.
Your candidate if... you want an outsider who is experienced in dispute resolution or even just someone who hasn't already been an arbitrator.
The Bad: He's not only not an admin, he's user who has not received community endorsement not once but twice by not reaching consensus for promotion at request for adminship. Concerns about whether he would take up a post if elected, given track record after first RfA and after being chosen a new page coordinator.
Candidacy summed up in one word: Devolution
Experience and positions of trust held: Joining in 2006, SilkTork successfully applied for adminship two years later. He was elected to a two year term which he served in 2012-13.
Your candidate if... you want someone who views ArbCom as a necessary evil that one day might be phased out
The Good: Recognizes how the committee has changed since his initial term. Has been an active content creator. Presents an informed moderate view for how ArbCom could be phased out.
The Bad: Moderate enough that he has said he won't propose any changes to how ArbCom operates, merely support others who might
Candidacy summed up in one word: Baseball
Experience and positions of trust held:
Your candidate if... you care about Wikipedia skins and/or think pie & baseball has gotten too much/not enough attention
The Good: Talented developer. Brings a sense of humor in an arena that all too often lacks it.
The Bad: Platform is intended to be humorous. A good contributor to the project but not necessarily meant to be taken seriously in this election.
Candidacy summed up in one word: Volunteer
Experience and positions of trust held: After joining in 2006 he waited six years before becoming an admin. He then only waited two years to become an Oversighter and then one more year before being elected to ArbCom where he served for two years.
Your candidate if... you liked what he did when he previously served on ArbCom.
The Good: Well regarded previous service on ArbCom. Seems to have garnered respect for his stance on civility.
The Bad: Didn't find previous ArbCom time rewarding. Has not been very active on project since he stepped down from the committee.
Candidacy summed up in one word:
Experience and positions of trust held: Former arbitrator, former admin
Your candidate if... You like candidates who get embroiled in an Arbitration case about his candidacy because they decide to cross bright lines of what you don't do as an administrator... and then wheel war while crossing the line.
The Good: He's concise in his answers; a significant number of his answers to questions are shorter than the questions themselves. He's been around so long that he became an administrator through an email rather than any kind of request for adminiship. Previous ArbCom experience.
The Bad: Hasn't been very active in the project recently prior to this candidacy. Also very clearly the stuff about getting the administrator bit taken away in the middle of the election for misuse and wheel warring. He's been around so long that he became an administrator through an email rather than any kind of request for adminiship.
Selected Questions & Answers
The links below are either answers or questions I really liked and think there is value in reading the candidate's response.
Offer to the Candidates
If you would like to contact me, either on wiki or privately via email, with suggestions for one word summaries or "your candidate if" as long as you follow the general length/form established here I promise to either use (if I agree) or post (via a hatted comment) your suggestion. Additionally, I would welcome any additional facets for experience and positions of trust held and am open to discussion or fact checking of any other information posted.