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Poll Result: Increased Java User Group Involvement Might Improve the JCP

Posted by editor on February 9, 2011 at 10:40 AM PST

A plurality of voters in last week's poll believe that increased involvement by Java User Groups will improve the JCP -- but, a closer look at the numbers suggests a fairly tepid degree of confidence that more JUG involvement can make a difference.

The poll was stimulated by the recent news that SouJava, the Brazilian JUG based in São Paulo, has been nominated for the JCP Executive Committee. Technically, according to Oracle's announcement, SouJava and Bruno Souza (its former President) have been nominated; Bruno will represent the group in JCP EC affairs.

The poll drew 144 votes. The exact question and results were:

Will increased Java User Group involvement improve the JCP?

  • 23% (33 votes) - Absolutely!
  • 26% (37 votes) - Probably
  • 20% (29 votes) - Maybe
  • 15% (22 votes) - Probably not
  • 4% (6 votes) - It will be detrimental
  • 10% (15 votes) - I don't know
  • 1% (2 votes) - Other

So, 49% of the voters believe greater JUG involvement will improve the JCP. If we discount the "I don't know" votes, that becomes a majority. But still, to me this seems like a kind of luke-warm affirmation that increased JUG involvement can make a difference.

If you consider "I don't know" and "Maybe" to be somewhat similar responses, that's 30% of people expressing that increased JUG involvement might not improve the JCP. Then there's the 19% who think that most likely greater JUG involvement will not improve the JCP, or will even be detrimental.

Still, if you compare the strongly positive votes (23% for "Absolutely!") with the strongly negative votes (4% for "It will be detrimental"), you note an enthusasm gap that clearly favors a positive response, and the idea that JUGs can indeed make a difference in the JCP.

My guess is that the JCP's reputation as a big, clunky, slow-moving, too-detached body makes many people think that nothing can really make much of a difference. I don't share that view myself, but I think it's a fairly common view.

As always, this poll wasn't scientific, it's just a voluntary survey, so none of the results should be taken as having broad significance. Still, it's interesting to review the results, and speculate on the meaning they potentially suggest.

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-- Kevin Farnham

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