Wikipedia:Wikipedia Signpost/2006-09-25/Board elections

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Erik Möller declared winner in Board of Trustees election

By Flcelloguy, September 25 2006
Eloq-pic2.jpg

The elections for the Board of Trustees concluded this week at the end of Thursday, September 21 after nearly three weeks of voting. The results of the elections were released Sunday, and Erik Möller, known as "Eloquence", was declared the winner with approximately 42% of the vote. Pending confirmation by the Wikimedia Foundation, he will join the Board of Trustees and complete the remainder of Angela Beesley's term, which lasts until July of 2007. Beesley resigned in July of this year to focus on other aspects of Wikimedia projects.

Möller has been a long-time contributor to Wikimedia projects, first joining the English Wikipedia in December 2001; he has been active in the English (where he has over 15,000 edits) and German Wikipedias, as well as on Meta-Wiki, Wikimedia Commons, and multiple other projects. He was also responsible for helping create and establish several projects, including both Commons and Wikinews, where he drafted many of the initial guidelines and policies. Möller is also a developer and has played a critical role in the development of MediaWiki software, helping code and implement multiple features, including subpages, section editing, the graphical editing toolbar, the table of contents, and input boxes.

A 27-year old journalist, author, and computer scientist residing in Berlin, Möller has also been involved with the Foundation previously. He served as the Foundation's first Chief Research Officer briefly from June to August 2005, resigning because of "personal differences and a fundamental disagreement about the nature and scope of the role." In his resignation letter, he cited a "personality conflict between [himself] and [current Board member Florence Nibart-Devouard] (Anthere) which led to many public disagreements between us over the last few years," as well as tensions between himself and Jimbo Wales, saying that Wales "often perceived me as a major threat... as someone who might try to undermine or replace him, [making] cooperation sometimes difficult." Despite announcing his intentions to leave Wikimedia, he never permanently left and soon helped organize the Wikimania 2005, which was held in Germany, as a member of the Program Committee. Since then, he has also given numerous talks at conferences pertaining to Wikimedia and wikis and written several articles (and even a book) about the topic.

Election results
1st Erik Möller 987 (42%)
2nd Kat Walsh 702 (30%)
3rd Oscar van Dillen 648 (28%)
4th Daniel Arnold 580 (25%)
5th Kim Bruning 492 (21%)
6th Aaron Swartz 423 (18%)
7th Charles Matthews 382 (16%)
8th Arno Lagrange 378 (16%)
9th Jussi-Ville Heiskanen 375 (16%)
10th Juan David Ruiz 356 (15%)
11th Kelly Martin 349 (15%)
12th Steve Dunlop 346 (15%)
13th Pat Gunn 323 (14%)
14th Alex Schenck 315 (13%)
15th Alex T. Roshuk 297 (13%)
16th Bruce Andersen 237 (10%)
17th Ross Hedvicek 109 (5%)

The voting for the elections, which had 17 candidates, ended at 23:59 on Thursday, September 21. The results were first announced on the Foundation-l mailing list at the beginning of Sunday, September 24 by the election officials - Essjay, James D. Forrester, Kizu Naoko, Dariusz Siedlecki, and Jon Harald Søby. There were a total of 2,347 valid votes, an increase of nearly 1,000 votes from last year's elections, and voters from English-language projects comprised nearly 50% of the total votes, according to unofficial statistics analyzed from the list of votes. However, despite the increase in the number of voters, no one candidate managed to garner over 50 percent of the vote, with Möller gaining approval from 42 percent, and the nearest contenders, Kat Walsh (Mindspillage) and Oscar van Dillen, receiving 30 and 28 percent approval, respectively. Both Walsh and van Dillen had been endorsed by Wales in the middle of the voting period; Möller had also received several endorsements, including that of Beesley, who called him the "best candidate to represent the community in the development of the Wikimedia Foundation over the coming year."

Möller's platform centered around making the Foundation more open; in an interview with the Signpost last month, he called for the Foundation to "establish a high level of transparency and low barriers to entry", citing the creation of several committees as a step in the right direction. In addition, he also pledged to improve all of the projects' networking, and promised to continue the Foundation's goal of free knowledge. Following the elections, Möller released a statement on his user page, thanking everyone for the support and promising to do his "best to work together with the Board to move our organization forward." On the Foundation-l mailing list, he also pledged to remain open to feedback and also congratulated the other candidates.

Reaction to the elections was generally positive. Beesley congratulated him and wished him good luck, both Danny Wool ([1]) and general counsel and interim executive director Brad Patrick welcomed him aboard, and Wales also congratulated him and offered thoughts on his platform.


Also this week: — Eloquence elected

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