How The Nukezilla Council Operates
[This document is almost always a work in progress.]
In late 2011 John started working for Nukezilla full time. One of the first things he did was to create the idea of the Nukezilla Council (NZC), a group of people who would replace him as the entity which runs the site. The NZC is a subsection of staff, each with a given role within the site’s management, working together to diffuse authority fairly amongst the collective to keep the site fair for all.
The members of the council change over time (no role is permanent) and the way decisions are made attempts to be as fair for all as possible. As of 6th Feb 2011, the following roles had been discussed. Where applicable the name of the current person serving under each title is given.
Council Chair – John Kershaw
The Council Chair is in charge of making sure the council operates. They have no added decision-making power. They are there to organise and facilitate meetings, as well as making sure everyone is happy in their roles. They can be thought of as the Council Project manager.
News Project Manager (News Editor and Editor-in-Chief) – Hans Wuerflein
The News PM makes sure Nukezilla covers news as best it can. This role leads our quality development and policy debate, as well as providing editorial oversight to the news.
Reviews Project Manager (Reviews Editor) – Brett Parsons
Similar to the News PM the Reviews PM’s main task is making sure Nukezilla produces reviews that are interesting and of high quality.
Industry Liaison Project Manager – Dan Rosenthal
The ILPM is Nukezilla’s version of the PR manager. They are the main contact with the industry. It’s their job to make sure we don’t burn bridges that don’t need burning, but also that we don’t compromise our ethics for industry pressure. They keep us on the ethical side of life.
Community Project Manager – Faye Lanks
The CPM is a very unique role in that the person who is the CPM is not a staff member, instead they are a member of the wider Nukezilla community. They are the voice at the council meetings which represents non-staff Nukezilla people. They are also in charge of community based events, site features and conflict resolution.
Features Project Manager (Features Editor)
Managing columns and one off features, making sure Nukezilla continues to output a solid quantity of original articles.
Video Project Manager
A role for the person in charge of Nukezilla’s video content.
New Person Project Manager
Somebody who’s role is based around staff recruitment, and making sure new memebers of staff are settling in and happy.
Merch Project Manager
The Merch PM is in charge of coming up with viable merchandise opportunities for the site. Everyone likes mugs.
The NZC aims to have meetings every two weeks. Availability of current council members is first considered when deciding on a time to have the meeting, however meeting times should be chosen to be as accessible as possible. Having a regular meeting time is problematic as it may exclude some people for long periods of time. The Council Chair is in charge of arranging meetings.
Meetings are open to, and should be attended by, anyone who is a current NZC member. Staff members curious to listen in are welcome to do so, and staff members who may want to take on a council role are encouraged to come along.
Community members are not currently invited to meetings, unless invited by the CPM for a specific reason which requires them to be there.
Before the meeting, a document listing discussion points is created. Anyone can submit a discussion point.
Meetings happen via a Skype conference call. The call is recorded. Each discussion point is gone though.
After the meeting a link to the audio recording, the pre-meeting discussion points and resulting minutes/notes are emailed to all staff.
What if I want to say something?
If you’re a council member, add what you want to say to the discussion points list and it’ll be brought up at the meeting.
If you’re a staff member, but not on the council, you can have your comment/issue put on the discussion points list. It’s recommended to chat to the most suitable council member before the meeting so they can speak on your behalf.
If you’re not on staff, you should talk to the Community Project Manager who can talk on your behalf.
Action Points and Proposals
During the meeting there’s two progressive things that can happen.
The first is that somebody is Action Pointed to do something. A record that person A said they would do thing B is noted and at the next applicable meeting their progress is discussed.
The second thing that can happen is that a Proposal is made. This is usually for larger or more important things which need doing or deciding. Proposals follow this process:
- At the meeting the council works out roughly what the Proposal needs to be.
- An email is sent to all staff with the Proposal details in for consultation. The default consultation period is a week, unless otherwise stated.
- If nobody objects, the proposal is put into action.
- If concerns are raised, a discussion is had about the proposal.
- If needed, the Proposal is discussed again, as well as all feedback, at the next Council meeting.
- A conclusion on what to do with the Proposal is made. The Proposal may be dropped, changed, or voted on in some form.
If it seems like there’s some disagreement, a form of voting is used to decide an outcome. The council decides on which form of voting is best.
Ideally a “normal” majority vote should be avoided unless consensus is not suitable. If 49% of people are unhappy, this is not a wanted outcome. Instead, consensus should be used; people can Agree (voting in favour of the Proposal), Stand Aside (choosing not to vote) or Block (very strongly disagree). If there is one Block, the Proposal does not pass.