[ARIN-consult] Community Consultation on Increasing the Size of the ARIN Board of Trustees

Lee Howard spiffnolee at yahoo.com
Sun May 14 13:56:37 EDT 2017

      From: John Curran <jcurran at arin.net>
 To: Lee Howard <spiffnolee at yahoo.com> 
Cc: "<arin-consult at arin.net>" <arin-consult at arin.net>
 Sent: Saturday, May 13, 2017 9:15 PM
 Subject: Re: [ARIN-consult] Community Consultation on Increasing the Size of the ARIN Board of Trustees
On 13 May 2017, at 8:15 PM, Lee Howard <spiffnolee at yahoo.com> wrote:

This is a potential sign of "groupthink," where people go along with what the group seems to want, rather than challenge the consensus. One way to fight groupthink is to include people with diverse perspectives.

> <chuckle>   I can assure you that we have anything other than a complacent Board,> or one suffering from “groupthink”…   

I'd started to soften my original message, but decided it was getting long without adding much value, and my message was unlikely to hurt Board members' feelings. ;-)

> As you may recall from your time on Board, you know that I often would suggest that > making a decision where there are highly contentious viewpoints was premature if time > allows us to do otherwise, and instead suggest pursuing further research into points 

Agreed; one of the best parts about serving on the ARIN Board is that the staff prepares so much information, so the Board is well-prepared for decisions without inefficiently researching independently. That sounds like it's risky, because Board members should be independent, but in practice the staff is thorough. 

That makes Board service educational, and I encourage people to self-nominate or find a friendly Member (MIGS) to nominate them.

> By way of example, the very topic of this consultation (expanding the Board size as one > means of potentially improving diversity) has been discussed by the Board no fewer > than 5 times previously 

I also saw a Suggestion from 2014 still on the docket in December 2016, with notes that it had been discussed regularly. 

> why an even number of Board members is not particularly problematic, since in practice > we don’t see many decisions that come down to be decided based on single trustee’s > vote –  that’s a good thing, since the Board making a decision on such a narrow margin > would be amiss if time allows for more consideration.  Making contentious changes to > ARIN’s registry services based on narrow margins is a perfect setup for later capricious > reversal, with both our members and the entire Internet community suffering as a result. 
Completely agreed. A tied vote means no action. 

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