As of March 2014, THATCamp is governed by a seven-person THATCamp Council, which is in turn governed by a community-produced THATCamp Council Charter.
THATCamp Council Members
Frédéric Clavert (term 2014-2016)
Amanda French (term 2015-2017)
Patrick Murray-John (Chair & RRCHNM appointee, 2014-2015)
Anastasia Salter (term 2014-2016)
Tim Sherratt (term 2015-2017)
Kathryn Tomasek (term 2015-2017)
Micah Vandegrift (term 2014-2016)
THATCamp Council Charter
last revised 2/17/15
Responsibilities of the Council
Supporting THATCamp organizers, participants, and would-be participants, especially by
answering questions on the THATCamp forums
creating and revising help documents on thatcamp.org
managing THATCamp social media accounts
attending and/or organizing THATCamps
Upholding core THATCamp values
Setting the long-term direction of the THATCamp project
Creating and revising community processes, policies, and governance documents
Resolving community conflicts
Structure of the Council
The Council will have seven (7) members.
One member of the Council must be a current employee of the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media (RRCHNM), which has committed to providing long-term support for the thatcamp.org website network.
RRCHNM will appoint a representative to the Council, chosen through an internal process of their determination. Others affiliated with RRCHNM may run for the Council through the regular process. (See Elections of the Council below.)
The Council will appoint a Chair from among its members at its first meeting of the year. (See Responsibilities of the Council Chair below.)
Council members will be granted Super Admin privileges on thatcamp.org, which will enable them to create, edit, and delete THATCamp sites, users, and forums, as well as to manage plugins and themes on the network.
Council terms (including the term of the Chair and the RRCHNM representative) are two years long (except in 2014-2015, when three elected members will serve one-year terms to begin term staggering), but members can hold an unlimited number of terms if they are reelected or reappointed.
Each year in March, the Council must hold an election of Council members. (See Elections of the Council below.)
Any THATCamp Council member or community member can propose amendments to the Charter or the dissolution of the THATCamp Council at any time. Such a proposal must be placed on an openly available agenda that is submitted to the THATCamp community for comment at least one week before a Council meeting. (See Meetings of the Council below.) Five Council member votes in favor are required in order to amend the Charter or dissolve the Council.
- Any THATCamp Council member can convene a meeting to propose the removal of an unresponsive or neglectful Chair. The current Chair must be invited to that meeting in a timely manner. The convening Council member will serve as Acting Chair of that meeting and must post the meeting agenda with a rationale for proposing the removal of the Chair publicly at least one week beforehand. Five Council member votes in favor are required at the convened meeting in order to remove a Chair.
Meetings of the Council
The Council will meet at least three times per year for the purpose of discussing and (if necessary) voting on issues of interest to the THATCamp Community. In general, meetings can take place online, via conference call, or in person. Meetings must by default be open to the THATCamp community.
When the Council meets, an agenda must be posted on the open web at least one week beforehand. (See Responsibilities of the Council Chair below.) The THATCamp community should easily be able to comment on the agenda, and the Chair should add community-suggested items to the meeting agenda at least one day before the meeting.
The Council will in general govern by rough consensus. When rough consensus fails, any Council member can call for a vote on any issue at any time, but the majority of the Council must agree that there has been sufficient discussion and must consent to put the issue to a vote. At least five Council members must be present and at least five votes cast in order for the Council to be quorate and the vote to be valid and binding. All present members of the Council may vote, including the Chair and the RRCHNM representative. In the event of a tied vote, the Chair has the power to decide the issue.
By default, meetings can be blogged, twittered, photographed, recorded, and posted online by any Council member. The votes of individual Council members are also by default public.
- Meetings are not recorded by default, but (as specified above), any member of the Council can record a meeting, and if any member of the THATCamp Community requests that an upcoming meeting be recorded and posted on the open web, the Council must do so.
Notes from each meeting and the outcome of any vote taken must be posted on the open web within one week after the meeting.
The Chair will have the power to convene a private meeting whose internal debates are not shared with the THATCamp community, but private meetings must still have a public agenda and public notes that report the outcome of any vote taken, though not the votes of individual Council members.
Agendas for and notes from all meetings, including private meetings, will be retained according to the Commonwealth of Virginia retention schedule for “Agendas, Schedules, and Informational Documentation for Meetings” (series 10035).
Current Council members will be granted access by the Chair to the private, restricted mailing list gro.p1428955434macta1428955434ht@li1428955434cnuoc1428955434 for as long as they remain Council members.
If the Chair refuses to convene a meeting in a timely manner, any member of the Council may convene a meeting.
Eligibility for the Council
Anyone who has helped organize a THATCamp will be eligible to serve on the Council.
Each member of the Council is expected to be actively, collegially, and reliably engaged with the THATCamp community and with the other members of the THATCamp Council during her or his term on the Council.
If any Council member misses two scheduled Council meetings in a row, that member may be asked to resign his or her seat on the Council.
Elections of the Council
Each year in March, the Council must hold an election of Council members. Since the RRCHNM representative is appointed, and since the 2-year Council terms are staggered, each year there will be 3 open Council seats.
Current Council members may run again for their own seats.
Anyone who is eligible may run for a Council seat: the initial election ballot has no maximum number of candidates. Candidates must inform the Chair of the Council of their intent to run by the last day of February. (See Eligibility for the Council.)
Elections will be conducted in two rounds when necessary. Both rounds will be conducted by partial bloc voting, in which each member of the THATCamp community may vote once each for 2 candidates for the 3 open seats. In the first round of voting, the THATCamp community will vote on a ballot with a minimum of 3 candidates and no maximum number of candidates. To ameliorate the effects of vote splitting, if 9 or more candidates stand for election, a second round of voting will be held in which the slate will consist of the 6 candidates who received the most votes in the first round of voting. If two or more candidates tie for 6th place in the first round, the second-round ballot will include all 6th place candidates.
Elections will be conducted using the YOP Polls WordPress plugin, which will be configured thus:
Voters must log in to thatcamp.org to cast a vote.
Each voter must vote only once for exactly 2 candidates for the 3 open Council seats.
Each voting period will remain open for one week.
The 3 candidates earning the highest number of votes at the end of the second voting period (if any) will serve on the Council.
Results of the election will not be displayed until after each election period.
Voters will be encouraged to elect a Council whose members are of diverse countries, ranks, fields, ethnicities, and genders.
In the event of a tie for the last open seat after the second round of voting (if any), a runoff election will be held between the tied candidates. Such an election will be conducted by the simple plurality system, in which each voter votes once for one candidate.
If a member of the Council leaves the Council before the end of her/his term, a simple plurality election must be held to fill the vacant seat. If the RRCHNM representative leaves her/his employment at RRCHNM before the end of her/his term, s/he must also leave the Council, and RRCHNM must appoint a new representative to serve the remainder of the term.
If the Chair leaves the Council or resigns her/his position as Chair, either mid-term or at the expiration of her/his term, the Council must appoint a new Chair at its first meeting following the Chair’s departure. The outgoing Chair should coordinate the date and place for this meeting as her/his last act as Chair, and the meeting should take place no more than one month following the Chair’s departure.
Changes to the election process must be discussed with the THATCamp community and voted on and approved by a quorate Council. (See Meetings of the Council.)
Responsibilities of the Council Chair
Coordinating the date, time, and place (or online “place”) of Council meetings, with every effort to choose times and technologies that enable all members of the Council to be present
Ensuring that a draft agenda is available for comment at least one week before any Council meeting
Incorporating community comments on meeting agendas into revised agendas
Finalizing Council meeting agendas no less than one day before the scheduled date
Determining whether a Council meeting should be private (see Meetings of the Council)
- Recording and posting recordings of Council meetings on the open web when requested to do so by a THATCamp community member
Deciding issues in the event of a tied vote
Posting required notes from meetings within one week of the meeting
- Ensure that community members who request to join a public meeting have appropriate access to the meeting
Taking primary responsibility for managing access and permissions to THATCamp.org and gro.p1428955434macta1428955434ht@li1428955434cnuoc1428955434 for incoming and outgoing Council members