General Assembly in Paris – Drones, Fees and a New PPI Board
The General Assembly of the Pirate Party International (PPI) took place on 13 April 2014 in Paris. During this event a few great ideas came up, a new board was elected and a membership fee has been implemented.
There were 22 PPI members present at the GA from the beginning of the conference, some of them remotely through “drones” (appointed persons at the GA staying in contact with them and speaking/voting on their behalf). The number of PPI members participating expanded to 24 when Portugal joined a bit later and then when Norway was accepted as a member. The members accredited at the conference were Australia, Belarus, Belgium, Brazil, Catalonia, Croatia, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, The Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Russia, Slovenia, Switzerland, Tunisia, Turkey, UK, Portugal (from 14:08), Norway (from 12:45). Representatives from three of the observer members were also present: Sweden, Lower Saxony and Pirates Without Borders.
One of the important issues of the day was the admittance of new members. There were two applications: one by Norway and the other one by Costa-Rica. Norway was directly admitted without a single vote against. The case for Costa Rica was slightly more complicated, the general mood was in favour but the Pirate Party of Costa Rica did not provide enough information for the delegates to make a proper decision. Therefore the decision on the admittance of Costa Rica was moved to the next GA.
The former board suggested a fee structure for PPI based on the Human Development Index (HDI). As always when it comes to money it was discussed for quite a while. The fee structure that was decided at the GA asks for 10% of the original proposal with an exemption for parties with less then 500 members. Those smaller parties can to pay as much as they want. Observer members will not have to pay any membership fees.
If we applied the old suggested calculation to Pirate Party of Swizerland, with an HDI of 0.913 (which is used as an exponent to the base number 500) and one elected pirate at local level (every elected member increase the fee by 10%), we get 1.10×5000.913 = 320.30 €. According to the suggestion accepted at the GA this value is then divided by 10, so 32.03 € for the Pirate Party Switzerland in membership fee this year.
The GA decided to elect Maša Čorak and Koen De Voegt as co-chairpersons (an interview with the two co-chairpersons will be published in Pirate Times in the near future). The other elected board members are: Thomas Gaul, Anders Kleppe, Gregory Engels, Sebastian Krone and Stathis Leivaditis. The alternative board-members elected were: Marco Confalonieri, Yasin Aydin, Min Chiaki and Chemseddine Ben emaa.
The newly elected board surprised several people, as Gregory Engels was not re-elected as co-chairman (as he has been the past few years). The former board members presented their report to the GA but some still lack a written report. The former board reports are up until now only from Thomas Gaul, Nuno Cardoso and Denis Simonet.
The past Court of Arbitration (CoA) made no rulings and presented no report despite a few people complaining about the previous PPI board. This might change with the new CoA. At the GA in Paris the delegates elected Bradley Hall (PPUS), Kjell Segers (PPBE), Gijs Peskens (PPNL), Vasilis Perantzakis (PPGR) and Henrique Peer (PPBR) to form the new CoA.
The lay-auditor report (written by one lay-auditor, approved by another and the third unreachable) mostly reported about the Think Twice conference, the current GA and made assumptions based on the proposed budget. PPUK were a bit upset that the lay-auditor had not reviewed their report on the PPI financial situation before writing the lay-auditor report. The motion to change the financial year was passed which will hopefully see a better prepared lay-auditor report for next GA. Pat Mächler was re-elected as lay-auditor together with Justus Römeth and Meelis Kaldalu.
For further information about the GA decisions you might want to check out the recording of the live stream, see the raw notation of votes and the preliminary minutes (some errors and readability will be fixed in final version).
Featured image: CC-BY Cristian Bulumac