In an email sent out to the Hyperledger Technical Steering Committee (TSC) mailing list, Hyperledger executive director Brian Behlendorf, proposed five new changes to the election rules in a bid to boost voter turnout. According to a report released on Coindesk, Hyperledger TSC’s newly elected chair, Arnaud Le Hors, also a blockchain staff member at IBM, added the proposals to agendas concerning governance of the enterprise blockchain network.
The TSC is the leading commission responsible of governance of the Hyperledger network system including voting on technical upgrades, approving projects and reviewing updates.
The Proposed Behlendorf Electoral Changes
In an election completed on Friday last week, IBM overwhelmingly won over half of the seats in the committee with 6 out of 11 seats going to the tech giant’s representatives. Following the huge win, the committee will now work on the latest issues of election voting amidst the community’s outrage on the IBM’s domineering influence over the enterprise blockchain solutions.
According to Behlendorf, the proposals are a reflection of what the community and internal Hyperledger community members feel about the future of the company’s elections. One such proposal is changing the election period from August to later months in the year. Behlendorf explained,
“The email I sent was to communicate back to the community some of the concerns which Hyperledger staff talked internally about. Some of them are mundane – like August might be a bad time to do critical things like an election.”
He suggested the community’s election should be conducted in October with the voter registration and data collection period held in September.
Furthermore, the proposal suggests a redefinition of who a voter is in the Hyperledger community. Currently, anyone who contributes to the code is eligible to vote. However, most of these developers email addresses are fake to prevent spam or may not be working anymore which causes a huge number of votes to go to waste.
Election Oversight Board
Behlendorf further proposes a more public and transparent electoral process that involves the Hyperledger team in charge of the election to share data and details to the TSC for approval. Across most of the open source distributed ledgers volunteers are needed to ensure the electoral process is smooth and fair.
In Hyperledger, the Linux Foundation employees take on the roles to ensure the elections are fair reducing the need for volunteer labor. In the proposed changes, Behlendorf suggests two non-TSC members to act as the election observers to ensure total fairness and transparency. He said,
“We have to make sure the TSC and governing board knows what we are doing and has enough oversight.”