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An SE staff member told us here:

"Currently, June 13th (with question collection starting on June 6th) is the tentative date for such an election, but only if we can get enough people willing to run for moderator positions."

However the question collection instead started on March 7th, and the election is now underway, 3 months before we were told it would be.

Why is that? I know that it was a "tentative" date, but it just doesn't seem right that the community would be told one thing, and then the company would do a drastically different thing instead, with no explanation or warning or feedback from the community.

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We were told about the June 13th date but soon after the CMs had another discussion and decided that it would be too far away, whilst February (at the time of gauging community responses) was too near. So they opted for March 7th for question collection and the moderation team agreed.

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    $\begingroup$ Just to clarify: this was a discussion between CMs and diamond mods behind closed doors? Also, I wonder if you could give us a reason for why June would be too far away? $\endgroup$ Mar 22, 2022 at 18:00
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    $\begingroup$ Yes, we just went along with it. I didn't ask, but I'm guessing it's to be in line with other sites' elections, but I don't think it matters anyway. $\endgroup$
    – TheSimpliFire Mod
    Mar 22, 2022 at 18:02
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    $\begingroup$ Thanks! If I understand you correctly, you're saying "yes" it did happen behind closed doors, and "no" there was no reason given for why "it was decided that [June] would be too far away". About your comment "I don't think it matters anyway", there's been a growing network-wide frustration about elections happening suddenly "at the time of SE's convenience" which doesn't give everyone enough time: one of the related Meta posts is this one suggesting a 4-3-2-1 election schedule. $\endgroup$ Mar 22, 2022 at 18:31
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    $\begingroup$ I guess, but it would also have to depend on the size of a site. (IMO a March election here is not egregiously bad as we are a small community) $\endgroup$
    – TheSimpliFire Mod
    Mar 22, 2022 at 18:40
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    $\begingroup$ The exact month (March) isn't as important as the amount of prior notice given. For example if the election were to fall in the middle of the CORS operations research & management science conference with only 1 week notice, people heavily involved in that conference won't be able to nominate themselves. Likewise a very excellent candidate might not be able to nominate themselves if the election falls during the birth of their baby, or during their doctoral thesis defense, or plenary talk, or tenure review. The 4-3-2-1 election schedule (or just more advance notice) would help for all of those. $\endgroup$ Mar 22, 2022 at 20:41
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    $\begingroup$ @NikeDattani Hm, you are right that the election date changed to March without advanced notice. There were some discussions with the mods about it, and I thought there was an announcement on Meta, but now I see that there was not. "Behind closed doors" sounds a bit nefarious; I'm guessing it was more of an oversight on SE's part. But I agree it was abrupt and I'm sorry for that. $\endgroup$ Mar 24, 2022 at 11:50

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