My current understanding of how the International Board is elected is as follows:  Candidates caucus at International Convention, and are given limited time to have a “Meet the Candidates” and give speeches and answer questions.  Regions are then allowed to vote.  Votes are allocated to regions based on their size, and ballots given to the regions.  The region then votes, choosing 5 delegates.  The 5 delegates are chosen with Regional Board going first, then Chapter Godols, then Regional Chairmen, then other attendees.  Yes ladies and gentlemen, 5 people from your region are allowed to vote on the candidates for I-Board, and those 5 candidates alone.  I will not even go into the philosophical argument of a Trustee voter vs. a Delegate voter, for you do not even need to think that hard to begin realizing the flaws of this system.

Time and time again during the Policy-Gate scandal, the Alephs and BBG’s have been reminded that “We elected two members to represent us to the adult staff, and therefore do have a say in the decision making process”.  Now let’s pause for a moment to analyze the numbers on this one.  First let us assume that there are 11,981 members in BBYO.  I do not know the exact membership, but this is the total taken from  Second let us assume that there are roughly 40 distinct regions around the world.  The total of votes here would be 40 times 5, or 200.  200 people make decisions on behalf of almost 12,000 other people.  1.66% of the members actually get to cast a vote.  On top of this, in order to cast your vote, you must pay a form of “Poll Tax” by paying the sum of around $500 dollars to attend international convention.  Ladies and Gentlemen, this is democracy at its worst.
So how do we fix it? Well, how about we stop thinking about BBYO as if it were 1927.  You are probably well aware, since you are all reading this blog using this very tool, that a interconnected network of computers, known as the Internet has allowed human beings across the world to instantaneously communicate.  Recently BBYO has taken advantage of this resource, albeit a little late, and created B-Linked and Dashboard.  These two tools are great and have great potential.  So why not utilize both these tools to improve our democratic power as members of this organization?
I present to you, the Ghostian Model of BBYO Election Procedure:  It’s really quite simple, and could easily be integrated with B-Linked.  By integrating the caucus, campaigning and voting procedures into a website, everyone who gives BBYO any of their spare time at all could have an opinion.  The election procedure would begin like normal, with submitting an application to the international office, and interviews with members of international staff and board.  Next, the candidates would all be announced on the same day, and given a sub-portal on the B-linked website.  In this portal, which would be similar to a B-Linked group, candidates could submit a 1 page 8.5 x 11 platforms, double sided, along with audio files of their speech.  In addition to this, there would be a moderated message board where the candidates could answer questions and speak to the membership.  This would greatly reduce the problem of voters not even knowing the candidates.  Sure, the problem of politicking would only increase, but the advantages would be worth it.  With dedicated moderators, insulting and offensive comments could be removed from the public eye, and an appropriate atmosphere would be maintained.
Now I know that these proposed changes will only partially solve the problem, but personally I believe that an improvement of our democratic process is necessary when electing two individuals to be the sole representatives to the adult international staff.
-Shane’s Ghost