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Open Source Initiative Extends Voting Period After Email ‘Typo’

Pushing the end of voting back by one day assures there will be no confusion about when the polls close, which could have cost some OSI members their votes.

The Open Source Initiative announced today that it’s extending the voting period in the current election for two individual member seats on its board of directors. Voting began on March 10 and was originally slated to run through March 20. Voting will now run through March 21.

This is a satisfactory ending to a small kerfuffle that began last night when I reported on a mistake in an email I received from Open Source Initiative that I feared could have consequences on election results. The email, sent to OSI’s individual members in an effort to get out the vote, erroneously stated that voting would end on “Monday, March 21” instead of Monday, March 20. A small thing, to be sure, but an error that had the potential to cost OSI members their vote if they made a mental notation of “March 21” and then put off voting until the last minute.

After the debacle that was the 2020 presidential elections in the US (and with some states working overtime to make it hard for people from selected groups to vote in future elections) you don’t want to do anything with an election that could possibly cause votes in any election to not be cast or counted — even if it is only the board election for a smallish (but powerful) open source organization.

Also, OSI doesn’t need the publicity that any after-election public questioning of results would bring, since only two years have passed the organization had to scrap the results of a similar election after discovering that at least one person had taken advantage of a software vulnerability and had voted twice.

After a bit of a back and forth on Mastodon today about the situation, OSI tooted (“toots” are what Mastodon calls “posts” or “tweets”) that “voting is extended until Tuesday March 21st,” which I had recommended in yesterday’s article because it looked like the easiest and least messy solution. Shortly after that Stefano Maffulli, OSI’s executive director, sent a DM, also on Mastodon, verifying that the election had been extended by a day.

“[D]ata shows that the most votes are cast in the hours closer to the email notification,” he added. “The last email will go out on Mar 20, so closing the vote 28 hours after that will give plenty of time for all to act.”

As Shakespeare once noted: All’s well that ends well.

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