[Siteselection] Anticipation Site Selection info

Glenn Glazer glenn.glazer at gmail.com
Thu Jul 23 17:37:59 PDT 2009

On Thu, Jul 23, 2009 at 7:54 AM, Colin Harris <palatinate at googlemail.com>wrote:

> Many thanks Glenn
> I have to say that you make some excellent points here. As you can
> imagine, my main focus was on how we process the data, and I hadn't
> really reflected on the precedents and problems that early access to
> the voter list could create. Having thought about this a bit more, I
> agree with your comments and that the right answer is to wait until
> the count is completed.

Thank you.  I truly believe that WSFS used considerable wisdom in setting up
Site Selection so that it is arbitrated by a neutral party.

I'd therefore like to focus if I may on specific questions around the
> approach you have kindly explained.
> 1. If I understand correctly, you'll have validated as you go along,
> so the data would be available as soon as the count is finished and
> signed off. I can't see any reason preventing the release of the data
> to us at that point - can you confirm that we will receive it then?

Yes, I plan to have the data available shortly after the vote is certified.

2. You'll also have it in electronic format - so we'll be receiving a
> CSV/Excel file with the fields you describe? (including the extra two
> fields for the vote by mail/in person split).

That's correct.

> 3. I'm sure that you can appreciate the value to us (and Warren!)

An important reminder to cc him on this (as I have).

> of
> receiving the data as early as possible so we can begin the
> integration process. Do you have a view on when you will start the
> count? I know that the desk closes at 6pm and in principle counting
> commences immediately; and in an uncontested vote with prevalidated
> ballots, the count should typically
> take no more than an hour. It would be very helpful to us if the count
> could occur as early as convenient after the desk is closed - that
> will enable yourself and the counters to enjoy the evening later on,
> and help us to be well prepared for the following day.

Indeed.  And I do not want to spend all night counting, either!  It is my
intent to take a short break after closing, clean things up and take the
stuff not needed for counting to storage.  From there, I will proceed
directly to the counting rooms to start as soon as possible.

A subject which has come up in another thread is volunteers for counting.
There is some parallelism in the process by which more people is helpful.
We have, basically four counts - the mail-in and the three voting days.
Thus, four people would be the most useful.  Each one will be paired with
someone not from your bid as per usual counting procedure.  If you have more
than four people who want to help, they could be these counterparts for the
NASFiC count.  Warren, the same is true for you in reverse.

> 4. As an aside - do you think it would be possible for us to receive a
> full extract of the name / address information for Montreal (not the
> voters - this would be everyone) earlier in the convention? It's very
> useful to see where our address doesn't match the one held by
> Montreal, because people often are less vigilant in sending CoAs to
> bids than to cons they are currently getting pubs from. Spotting these
> anomalies will make it easier to investigate them and easier to merge
> the voter data (by name and address match) later on when we do get it
> from you.

Unfortunately, no.  Lea Farr of Registration says: "Point 4 - No, we will
not provide him with the entire database at any time. "  I am sorry, but
apparently Quebec data privacy laws are rather strict.

5. Finally on the separation of the mail-in ballots - thanks for
> letting us know the time, we'll check availability at our end for that
> slot and let you know in the next couple of days who will be
> attending.


Many thanks again for your considered response on this.
> Colin

You're welcome,


> 2009/7/23 Glenn Glazer <glenn.glazer at gmail.com>:
> > Hi, Colin.
> >
> >
> > On the subject of data formats, Lea Farr (Registration) and Allison
> Hershey
> > (my data/IT person) and I have settled on a format based on what the
> > registration database supports.  The fields are:
> >
> > Class
> > Number
> > Last Name
> > First Name
> > Badge Name
> > Address 1
> > Address 2
> > City
> > State
> > Postcode
> > Country
> >
> > To which Site Selection will add two columns: mail-in and at-con to be
> used
> > as check boxes.  Registration will provide Site Selection with the
> initial
> > listing and then update deltas at regular intervals.  This should help
> you a
> > great deal as it means that you will not need to merge any of our data
> > together before merging it with yours.
> >
> > On the subject of when this data will be available, voter information is
> not
> > validated in batches.  This sort of thing is what lead to the infamous 14
> > hour site selection count.  Rather they are validated when they vote.
> >  Despite this, the answer to your request must be no.  The Constitution
> says
> > this:
> >
> >   4.1.3: The current Worldcon Committee shall administer the voting,
> collect
> > the advance membership fees, and turn over those funds to the winning
> > Committee before the end of the current Worldcon.
> >   4.1.4: The site-selection voting totals shall be announced at the
> Business
> > Meeting and published in the first or second Progress Report of the
> winning
> > Committee, with the by-mail and at-convention votes distinguished.
> >
> > Thus, there is no Constitutional binding on the Site Selection
> administrator
> > to produce the results you requested.  Further, there are two important
> > reasons why your request must be declined.
> >
> >   1)  While part of the Site Selection Administrator's job is to ensure
> > fairness among the bids, it is also their job to protect the voters and
> in
> > particular, voter anonymity.  Assume, for example, that some Event
> occurred
> > at the convention in which would have a significant impact on how people
> > voted.  Knowing the day someone voted would allow you to determine which
> > voters might have been swayed by this Event and which not, piercing the
> > protection Administrators are supposed to provide.  In fact, I cannot see
> a
> > legitimate use by a bid for this data at all and it will not be provided
> by
> > Anticipation.  You do have the right to know how many people voted each
> day
> > and aggregate, not individual, data will be given out.
> >
> >   2)  Assume this was a contested bid.  Then, the Administrator would
> have
> > to provide this information daily to all of the bids.  In addition to
> being
> > burdensome, all but one of the bids would have no use for this
> information
> > at the end and really has no right to it.  Distributing it in this manner
> > could quite possibly violate data privacy laws in many places.  It also
> sets
> > a very bad precedent for future Administrators and I do not wish to place
> a
> > future Administrator in the position of having to fight off attempts to
> give
> > out this data to all of the bids because "They did it at Anticipation."
> >
> > Thus, all of the data will only be available to the winning bid after the
> > count is completed.  It will be sorted alphabetically to anonymize voting
> > order.
> >
> > Additionally, as your bid has insisted on, you will need to provide an
> > observer while I separate the mail-in ballots.  The time and date for
> this
> > will be 2100 hours on August 4th in my room at the Delta.  Please be
> prompt
> > as the NASFiC representative will be coming in after you.  As I do not
> know
> > my room number yet, I give you my cell phone number (562-305-2920) which
> > will work in Canada.   Please feel free to have your representative call
> me
> > after 1900 to find out where my room is.
> >
> > Best,
> >
> > Glenn Glazer
> > Site Selection Administrator
> > Anticipation
> >
> >
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