Re: on expanding the TSC

binh nguyen

Hi all,

+1 to all and especially the details in Mark's and Chris' response emails. We might need a rules book,  but let's be careful not to do this Visitor arrested for eating chicken with fork :- ) 

I do have 1 concern though: most of us agreed to increase the members of TSC to adequately represent the community, but the way we organize our election today can't really achieve that IMHO. Taking top N with the highest number of votes doesn't represent the diversity of our community. I think we should organize our election based on projects and working groups, depending on the size, each project/working group many have different number of representatives (similar to US Congress even though they are famous for doing nothing :- ) 

For example, we could go with a logarithmic algorithm in allocating TSC members to a project or working group -- eg 0 < log10(x) < 4. This would guarantee a sizable project or working group would be represented, but no large group could dominate. This is just an idea off the top of my head. We can work out different techniques to ensure that TSC represents the breadth of our community.


On Mon, Aug 12, 2019 at 10:24 AM Christopher Ferris <chrisfer@...> wrote:
Yeah, I forgot about this, but the Board modified ITS quorum rules for voting because we had a bit of an issue attaining quorum in the first year.
"Any Governing Board representative who fails to attend two consecutive Governing Board meetings will not be counted for purposes of determining quorum requirements as of the third consecutive meeting and until they next attend a Governing Board meeting."
Note that the language does not penalize voting privileges, directly but simply modifies the quorum rules. We could add the similar language to the charter to cover the TSC.
Any TSC member who fails to attend two consecutive TSC meetings will not be counted for purposes of determining quorum requirements as of the third consecutive meeting and until they next attend a TSC meeting.

Christopher Ferris
IBM Fellow, CTO Open Technology
email: chrisfer@...
twitter: @christo4ferris
IBM Open Source white paper:
phone: +1 508 667 0402
----- Original message -----
From: "Mic Bowman" <cmickeyb@...>
Sent by: tsc@...
To: Hyperledger List <tsc@...>
Subject: [EXTERNAL] Re: [Hyperledger TSC] on expanding the TSC
Date: Sat, Aug 10, 2019 11:49 PM
+1 on increasing the TSC membership. the diversity of projects and complexity of projects would benefit tremendously from a more diverse TSC. we are more than "platforms" and the representation should reflect that.
i am concerned with "unexcused" absences (or at least absences that were not previously reported to the TSC chair) and the effect on quorum. several of the ideas presented seem to have merit. it does seem likely that many of these would work well and none would be perfect. lets not reinvent the wheel. seems like this might be a great time to adopt arnaud's approach and write up a could of these as concrete proposals we could consider.
On Sat, Aug 10, 2019 at 1:52 PM mark wagner <mwagner@...> wrote:
Chris and all who have spoken or read the thread.
This a great suggestion. I think that we need to request multiple changes to the charter in regards to the TSC. Plus I am not sure which of these require a charter change (Governing Board vote) vs a TSC vote.
1) Increasing the board size to 17 or 19.
I think that tying the size to the max number of Premium members sends an unintentional message that your money buys a vote (even though that is *not* the case or intent  here). Also, keeping the size "smaller" should make the meetings easier to manage.  we do have a lot of participation in TSC discussions from non TSC members so their voice is heard.
2) I am in favor of the proposal to require attendance.
I think missing two consecutive meetings is a good number to lose your voting rights until you attend your second consecutive meeting. So your first meeting back you can not vote. If you attend the following meeting you can vote. But you miss the second meeting you start prohibition all over.
3) Create the position of a TSC Vice Chair
Note that my thoughts here are about the process and are not intended as a reflection of the people.
It felt wrong to me that we allowed the Chair position to be passed around this year without input / official consent, when the elected, and then Chair appointed person, were both unable to fulfill their obligations / responsibilities. Also please keep in mind that the TSC Chair gets a seat and a vote on the Governing Board, so if the Chair is unable to attend the Board meeting, then the Vice Chair would automatically step up for that meeting.  The Chair is an elected position and TSC should be able to vote on who the position falls to when the Chair is unavailable to fulfill the duties.
So, my thoughts were that the newly elected TSC would vote on both a Chair and a Vice Chair. We should decide if the Vice Chair is the second highest vote tally for the Chair position or if it is a distinct, and concurrent, election at the time we vote for the Chair position.
4) Replacing a TSC member.
There should documented methods to replace a TSC member who is unable or unwilling to fill their term. This can be a single election by the community or an appointment by TSC vote (majority or super majority)?
5) Removing a TSC member (vote of no confidence / impeachment)
There should also be a mechanism to strip someone of their TSC seat / privileges if it is determined that they are no longer willing or able to fulfill their role in good faith or in accordance with the Hyperledger Charter and or bylaws.  This is a big deal so it should be "difficult" to do. So if it is a TSC elected position (Chair, Vice Chair) then a super majority of the TSC is required. If it is a TSC seat then a majority of the community, OR we can leave it to the Governing Board.
Also, if after five consecutive meetings missed you should lose your seat.
5) Delegation of privileges.
There has been some private chatter of allowing a TSC member to appoint someone to fill in for them when the TSC member can not attend a meeting, etc.  Again, TSC membership is a privilege voted upon by the community. It is not transferable. Just say no.
6) Remove the start up clause of the charter 4.a.i
This was only valid for the first six months of HYperledger. Not sure we need it any longer.
7) Reconcile modify the definition of Contributor between 4.a.ii and 4.b.i (see below)
Proposal to change 4.a.ii from:
"An Active Contributor is defined as any Contributor who has had a contribution accepted into the codebase during the prior twelve (12) months."
"An Active Contributor is defined as any Contributor or Maintainer who has had made a technical contribution during the prior twelve (12) months. This can include code accepted into the codebase, actively participating in Working Groups,Committees, etc "
Also modify 4.b.i to replace the word "codebase" with something more expansive to also reflect WG contributions, etc.

4. Technical Steering Committee (“TSC”)

a. Composition

i. Startup Period: During the first six (6) months after project launch, the TSC voting members shall consist of one (1) appointed representative from each Premier Member and each Top Level Project Maintainer, provided that no company (including related companies or affiliates under common control) shall have more than three (3) votes on the TSC.

ii. Steady State: After the Startup Period, there shall be a nomination and election period for electing Contributors or Maintainers to the TSC. The TSC voting members shall consist of eleven (11) elected Contributors or Maintainers chosen by the Active Contributors. An Active Contributor is defined as any Contributor who has had a contribution accepted into the codebase during the prior twelve (12) months. The TSC shall approve the process and timing for nominations and elections held on an annual basis.

b. TSC projects generally will involve Maintainers and Contributors:

i. Contributors: anyone in the technical community that contributes code, documentation or other technical artifacts to the HLP codebase.

ii. Maintainers: Contributors who have the ability to commit code and contributions to a project’s main branch on an HLP project. A Contributor may become a Maintainer by a majority approval of the existing Maintainers.

On Fri, Aug 9, 2019 at 8:27 PM Baohua Yang <yangbaohua@...> wrote:
I like this idea.
Besides, we may consider an automatic opt-out for 3 continuous unexcused absences.
And for the number, consider the growing size of the community and more new projects, 17, 19 or 21 are good candidates.
On Thu, Aug 8, 2019 at 4:18 PM Arnaud Le Hors <lehors@...> wrote:
I support this idea. My only concern with growing the TSC would be the risk of not reaching quorum but if we mitigate this risk with an appropriate measure I think we can only gain from the expansion.
For what it's worth, OASIS has to that end a notion of Voting Rights that you lose after missing 2 meetings and gain back after attending 2 meetings that is easy to implement and works well in my experience:
Arnaud  Le Hors - Senior Technical Staff Member, Blockchain & Web Open Technologies - IBM

From:        "Christopher Ferris" <chrisfer@...>
To:        tsc@...
Date:        08/08/2019 02:53 PM
Subject:        [EXTERNAL] [Hyperledger TSC] on expanding the TSC
Sent by:        tsc@...

On today’s TSC call, I noted that when we established Hyperledger, we had 11 Premier members and chose the number of TSC members as a derivative of that. We now have 18 Premier members and a board that has 21 members. We have grown from one to now twelve projects and we have 3 proposed projects in the pipeline. We also have a growing number of WGs that may also be underrepresented. Yet, we have not grown the TSC beyond the original 11. This means that the TSC may not adequately represent the full breadth of our community.

We talked about the prospect of expanding the TSC to enable greater diversity of projects and WGs, as well as of expertise, etc.

Brian noted that CNCF TOB has an elected tier and a provision in their charter that the elected members may also choose a number of individuals from within the community  to serve as well. This might be a good model to emulate.

Any change in the number of TSC members will, of necessity, require a Hyperledger charter revision requiring a 2/3 vote of the board.

I’d like this email to serve as a continuation of today’s discussion hopefully leading to a formal proposal to a charter revision.

I’ll start by suggesting that we find a way of growing the TSC beginning this year, but after the scheduled TSC election, by at least six members. As was also expressed by Mic, we probably also should keep the size manageable, so maybe no more than 21 total.

Ry and Arnaud also suggested maybe adopting a quorum rule that penalized absentee members by removing them from quorum calculation and suspending voting privs following repeated unexcused absences as a device to encourage participation and diminish potential that we not achieve quorum (this seems not to have been a problem excepting in the summer months, but we might consider something as a prophylactic measure.



Christopher Ferris
IBM Fellow, CTO Open Technology
IBM Digital Business Group, Open Technologies
twitter: @christo4ferris
IBM Open Source white paper:
phone: +1 508 667 0402




Best wishes!

Baohua Yang



Mark Wagner
Senior Principal Software Engineer
Performance and Scalability
Red Hat, Inc




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