I have been watching the current election on SO extremely closely, and am participating in it as well. I have a number of thoughts and I am not sure if they are valid. I know others have had thoughts about various aspects of this election as well. To that end I think it's important to lay out some groundwork on the current state and intentions of the election system, so that we can all be on the same page.
While this post does a good job of describing the mechanics (and some of the philosophy behind the nomination phase), it is limited in scope. I have spent a fair bit of time browsing through election as well.
So, basically, can the following blanks be filled in?
- The purpose of the nomination phase is to allow candidates to _____.
- The purpose of the nomination phase is to allow voters to _____.
- The purpose of the primaries are to allow candidates to _____.
- The purpose of the primaries are to allow voters to _____.
- The purpose of the final election phase is to allow candidates to _____.
- The purpose of the final election phase is to allow voters to _____.
- I am asking about elections network-wide, but if SO is a special case, are there any relevant differences in the above?
I am looking for the above with respect to candidates and voters during the phases, rather than the election system as a whole. Basically, if a candidate or voter were to ask "What does this phase do for me?". (For example: The primaries "allow voters to get to know the candidates" rather than "narrow down the candidate choices to make the list more manageable".)
I'm ideally looking for an answer from an SE employee, preferably from somebody who has been involved in designing the process in the past.
I am not necessarily looking for 100% accurate, definitive ultimate goals; only a sense of the current system, even if the system is still evolving (for example).
I am just trying to get a handle on where it currently stands so that I can figure out which of my own opinions are valid or completely off-base. The intent here is to make sure everybody is on the same page, not to praise or criticize the current process and philosophies. Also, my perception is that some SE folks are thinking about this internally as well (although this may be incorrect, is it?), so this may help make the current state more concrete.