Euro Elections and fsfe

Joe Awni joe.awni at
Wed May 29 09:38:00 UTC 2019

Existential issue(s) aside, I think Free Software voters are uniquely well
positioned to contribute to the political process. If you look at our most
recent election, most voters abstained which does not tell you a lot about
their preferences but it does speak volumes about their commitment to
informed decision making. Unfortunately, there is a tendency to think in
terms of a spectrum and being somewhere on a spectrum. It’s a flawed mental
operating system engineered to help you make decisions quickly and get back
to your most pressing daily matters (and hopefully have a nice day you).
But, its not the most accurate representation of the phenomenon known as

Democratic decision making does not have to be a popularity contest as some
have implied. We have shown that Free Software voters are responsible
enough to know when to vote and when not to. In the case of not providing
information to them for any reason, the effect is, it only makes them less
likely to vote. I suspect most voters abstained because they did not judge
themselves as well-informed enough to contribute in a meaningful way. They
simply let other people, presumably more familiar with the topic decide. It
could be said that it is a very trusting act to abstain from voting with
the assumption that only well informed people will do so. Doing so could be
a mistake if other voters are not as responsible. Currently, there is no
way to give increased weight to “expert” voters other than barring
non-expert voters, but i could imagine a system of categorized voting that
allows one to vote on matters they are familiar with and by deferring on
topics they don’t understand receive more influence on topics that matter
to them.

The only thing more important than the past is the present. And, the only
thing that matters is the future. Politicians are right, and they are wrong
at the same time. They don't fit anywhere on a so called spectrum. It’s
called irony, hypocrisy, or the simultaneous contemplation of two opposites
for fun and profit. In conclusion, it does not help you make the most
informed decision possible. With that in mind, I reiterate the importance
of a democratic consensus based system of governance for Free Software.

On Wed, May 29, 2019 at 10:35 AM Florian Snow <floriansnow at> wrote:

> Hi Vitaly,
> Vitaly Repin <vitaly_repin at> writes:
> > Strong assiociation with any political movement (eurosceptics,
> > liberals, social democrats etc) is a mistake in my opinion.
> I agree.  That is why the FSFE does not associate itself with a
> political movement.  We want to be able to talk to any politician.
> > Why can't FSFE monitor how each and every MEP voted for the matters
> > regarding free software dyring the current and previous election term
> > and present this statistics at FSFE web site (searchable web pages +
> > json/xml)?
> I like the idea, but I also worry about its effect.  Other groups have
> similar lists, for instance the NRA about gun control in the US, and
> there's a guy who makes US politicians sign a pledge to never raise
> taxes and he tracks that.  It creates a problem when people take this
> lists about singular issues as the sole basis for their vote.  Politics
> is more complicated than that and I personally feel that while Free
> Software is important, there are clearly more existential issues out
> there that should take precedence.  Some politicians will be more
> knowledgable about those than about Free Software and when it comes to
> technology, they will vote with their trusted colleagues.  I would not
> want to fault them for that.
> That being said, if you think, if you think this is an important matter,
> would you be able to compile and maintaint the data?
> Happy hacking!
> Florian
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