#passvotes : The Drama Continues

*** Disclaimer: Regardless of the rumors, I am not.. nor have I ever been related to Steve Jones. Just because we share the same last name doesn’t count. Jeesh people! ****

There has been an awful lot of traffic bounding about because of Steve Jones not being put on the slate of candidates for this years BoD elections. What is really interesting about the dynamic of this is that it is not really Steve stoking the fire. He merely put a post out there that said “I didn’t make the cut” …you can read it here:  More Free Time – PASS Board of Directors . The community is the entity that is up in arms about it. They are the ones that are rallying around Steve with a call for changing the way things are done at PASS. That’s got me really stoked! That the community is engaged.

What has got me much less than stoked is the fact that it seems that PASS wants to make this about Steve and not about the fact that they have made a really dumb business decision. Don’t blame the NomCom ….they were just doing what they were told to do. It was up to big daddy PASS in order to say..Hmmm, this looks kinda CRAZY! …let’s make a change !…Steve is a person with a proven track record of community success …SQLServerCentral,  SQLSaturday, etc…. people gravitate to people like that. If Steve were a PASS Board Member , don’t you think that people who gravitate towards him would in turn gravitate towards PASS? Doesn’t anyone else look at this and think that this was a no brainer from a business perspective?

I talk about this all the time when talking to businesses about doing things with an eye to public perception and seizing on pivotal moments. What PASS suffers from now is that it is perceived to be a “good ole’ boys club”. Doesn’t really matter if PASS is or is not that….it’s what it is perceived as being. Now it’s going to be harder than ever to shake that. In this situation, they have already failed to seize the moment….they don’t put Steve’s name on the ballot and they look like morons….they do put Steve’s name on the ballot and they look like weak cheese that caved to public sentiment. Maybe the only thing that PASS has to do is what Andy Leonard suggested via Twitter:

All #sqlpass needs to do is convince everyone the guy emailing over 1M SQL Server professionals each weekday is unqualified #passvotes


So what do we do as a community now? Can we really ‘change the system from within’ ? I am not sure…it’s going to take some doing from the current board members….you see, the process isn’t like an open election….so it’s not like we can go and say “We’re putting up candidate X because he is for change..”. Sorry, but they would have to get through the NomCom first and the sitting board gets to decide what rules the NomCom has to follow. So if the board says ‘”Grade candidates based on there local chapter involvement with ordering pizza for the monthly meetings …only counting meetings that start with the first letter of their last name” then the NomCom has to follow that… and candidate X is not going onto the ballot. So something must fundamentally change at the top in order for us poor bottom feeders to have more input. The status quo of “In order for you to run for PASS President(or insert title here) you must have been a local PASS treasurer, local PASS VP,local PASS President, regional PASS president, PASS secretary, PASS Marketing Director,………” just doesn’t quite cut it.

I will give some shout outs to Stuart Ainsworth http://codegumbo.com/ for coming out and explaining some of what happened in terms of the NomCom. It almost reminds me Bruce Willis’s character in Hart’s War …when he comes back to the camp only to get shot….***s of Steel that there Canjun haz!

So what is the answer? Hell, if I know …but you sure have to admit that controversy is WAY more funner than the status quo.

And now a quick Lol Cat to brighten everyone’s day:)


What haz been seens cannut be unseenz.