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JCP's Evolution into Openness Continues: Lost Voting Rights and JSR 355

Posted by editor on January 29, 2012 at 3:20 PM PST

I was surprised to read the JCP Program Office's recent announcement that AT&T, Samsung, and SK Telecom have all lost their Executive Committee (EC) voting rights. The reason? Well, the JCP EC meeting held earlier this month was the second held under the new JCP 2.8 EC Standing Rules. Under those rules, if an Executive Committee member misses two consecutive meetings, they lose their voting privileges. AT&T, Samsung, and SK Telecom missed the last two EC meetings, so they'll have no voting rights for a while (see their names highlighted in RED on the current JCP minutes page).

To me, this is refreshing. It shows that, under the JCP 2.8 rules, membership on a JCP Executive Committee isn't just a title for a company (or individual) to highlight on their web site or resume. A responsibility is entailed. If you're not going to fulfill your obligation to attend the meetings, then you won't have a say in what happens next.

Also, it seems to me that an EC member's attendance record will now matter when the next EC election comes up. That's a very good thing too, I think. If you're on the EC, attend the meetings -- or step aside, and let someone who genuinely wants to participate take your place.

So, if you miss two consecutive meetings, you lose your voting rights (along with your right to make or second a motion). If you miss five consecutive meetings, or if you miss 2/3 of all the meetings that take place in any 12-month period (EC meetings typically occur on a monthly basis), you are booted off the Executive Committee entirely (regardless of how major you are in the marketplace, or how famous you may be as an individual).

Now, if after you lose your voting rights, you decide you want to take your EC membership seriously, you can regain your voting privileges: by attending two consecutive upcoming meetings. I hope AT&T, Samsung, and SK Telecom will all decide to do that. There are very good reasons why JCP members voted them into their Executive Committee seats. It's time for them to fulfill the roles they were elected to fulfill.

JSR 355: JCP.Next, Part 2

The JCP Program Office also announced Another JCP.Next JSR submitted. This is JSR 355: JCP Executive Committee Merge. In her post about the new submission, the JCP's Heather Vancura-Chilson summarizes the main thrust of the JSR as follows:

this JSR proposes to make changes to the JCP's Process Document and the Executive Committee's Standing Rules with the goal of merging the two Executive Committees into one and reducing the total number of Executive Committee members from the current total of 32. The existing two-to-one ratio of ratified to elected seats will be maintained. On the merged EC neither Oracle nor any other member may hold more than one seat.

At JavaOne, we saw a vision of an across-the-board synchronization of the Java platform presented, wherein all facets of the Java platform, from editions for the smallest devices to Java EE preparing for the emergence of data centers in the cloud, will be driven toward consistency. Loose strands will be brought back toward the core Java platform. If this is indeed the vision, indeed the plan, then it makes a lot of sense to have only a single Java Community Process Executive Committee.

JSR 355 is yet another excellent move for the JCP, in my view. And the fact that the JCP 2.8 rules clearly delineate the responsibility of members to take their positions seriously -- that's great for Java and the Java/JVM developer community as well. Nice work, JCP!


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