So, the election are over. Some statistics and factoids of interest.
From the election page:
22,919 voters were eligible, 9,261 visited the site during the election, 4,655 visited the election page, and 2,161 voted
This is quite a terrible statistics. Out of almost 10k users that could vote, and were online during this week, only half bothered to look at the election, and only about half of them bothered to even vote.
I am not someone who espouses "everyone should vote". In fact, I would limit voting rights to people who at least passively follow the meta site. And it is definitely the case that a lot of people have little interest in meta-matters, and they should avoid voting as they usually don't read the meta site, and aren't very well aware of the more or less pressing issues that are on the agenda often.
Nonetheless, I'd be happier if a higher percentage of people were more engaged to vote. At least of those who bothered to visit the election page.
Looking at the online statistics, one can open the ballots page. The first thing one notices, is that the first ballots have only one vote. In fact, the first ballot to even have a third vote is ballot number 77.
grep -c "2</div"and
grep -c 3</divon the html page, shows that nearly 300 people didn't choose a third candidate; and out of these only a 100 had cast a second-choice vote (specifically, out of 2161 ballots there are 1985 ballots with at least two votes; and 1865 ballots with all three votes (it might interest someone to know that all ballots had a first choice)).
It is unclear, and probably impossible to know, if those partial ballots are due to lack of understanding the fact that one can vote for three candidates, or just people "gaming the election badges" and casting a vote for the first candidate on their page before moving on.
But it is best to cast three out of three votes. And so, I am not sure what to make out of this whole thing.
As I remarked before. The last election was a rage. We had many participants, many third-party-nominations of users nominating other users. There was a lot more debate going on, and a lot more energy poured into the meta site.
While I don't trust my memory to that degree, the election before that (2013) was also pretty active, even if not to the same degree. Or so I remember.
Long story short, I feel that perhaps this election came more as a surprise to many people here, and was somewhat hastily. In my opinion, at least, giving the community another week before starting the official nomination process might have been conducive to a more active election.
I would love to hear some input from the members of the community as to what do they think about the elections we just had, and what lessons can we learn from these—and other—things.