[DECISION] Remove deputy chair role from Emiliano, appoint László as new deputy chair

Dear community,

the following decision, which was taken in private on 2023-11-16, is now made public in accordance with our statutes.


  1. remove deputy chairperson role from Emiliano, reversing the vote
    from our board meeting on August 8th, 2022, effective immediately

  2. appoint László Németh as the new TDF deputy chair, effective

As advised, the board of The Document Foundation can exceptionally dismiss a (deputy) chair person and elect a new one, if there is good cause. In this case, there is fundamental disagreement and mistrust between the deputy chair, and a majority of directors.

The Board of Directors at the time of voting consists of 7 seat holders (not including deputies). In order to be quorate, the vote needs to have 1/2 or more of the Board of Directors members, which gives 4.

Board Vote Tally

Approve: 4 Ayhan, Cor, Gabor, Thorsten
Disapprove: 0
Abstain: 1 László
No. of participants: 5 (Vote is quorate)

The proposal has been accepted by simple majority, one deputy supports the motion.

PS: I’d like to personally thank Emiliano for serving in this role, during perhaps the most challenging times we ever had on the board. I do hope, that in a different, and less fast-paced setup, we can collaborate again effectively (like we did at the beginning of this term).

Best, Thorsten

I’m disappointed to hear this has happened.

The justification for Emiliano’s removal seems to have been merely the desire to solidify the control of one faction within the board over the opposition. There is not even a claim that Emiliano has failed to perform his duties, has violated the statutes, has acted against the interests of the foundation, etc. He just has disagreements with the two of you, so you gathered your supporters and ousted him.

When the board experiences disagreements, it should work them out, taking minority positions into account and striving for consensus; and expanding discussion of fundamental disagreements to larger fora. Naturally, consensus isn’t achieved always, but it appears like you are relying on the “whip” of holding the majority so as to dismiss alternative perspectives to your own.

As for trust - board members officially have the trust of the board-of-trustees, individually and collectively. And you have really not made any attempt to demonstrate vis-a-vis the trustees that Emiliano is undeserving, or less-deserving, of trust.

1 Like

Hi Eyal,

Please reconsider your approach, when starting a discussion. You’re jumping to conclusions, in the most offensive way. In contrast to others, I try to avoid laundering personal issues in public - you can therefore assume there’s been a long & quite difficult process behind us, and it’s not a power play.

Best, Thorsten

@EyalRozenberg it’s good to see that also external observers got clearly the reasons why Emiliano was removed by just looking at the tip of the iceberg.

The rationale given internally by the chairman had no connections with reality and just a shameful attempt of inventing faults for Emiliano omitting that he, like myself, has been taken out the official decision processes as he did not accept to support or participate to actions that could be define at best as unethical.


It’s tragic that you just continue lying.

@andreasma the goal is to keep this free from messages that refer to legal advice.

In contrast to others, I try to avoid laundering personal issues in public

With respect, Thorsten - TDF board matters are the opposite of personal issues - they are public matters. What you’re describing is not maintaining privacy, but managing TDF’s affairs in partial secrecy.

You’ll also note I said “seems”. For a removal, “good cause” is needed, and the decision must list that cause. The cause you listed is “fundamental disagreement” and “mistrust” - by the ruling faction in a member of the opposition faction. If there is another reason, I ask that you list it; if there isn’t - don’t insinuate that there is.

Edit: See correction: It should also be emphasized that this measure of Emiliano’s removal was taken “in abstenia”, with him not present, nor any other (well, the single other) member of the opposition. Yes, the BoD was quorate - but that is again IMHO misuse of majority rule. Correction: It seems this is not the case, but the presence of Paolo and Emiliano is not recorded in the decision. I retract this statement (although the decision text is misleading; it should include a refused-to-vote figure, or present members.)

Who decided to delete messages from this list?

Who decided to delete messages of a member of the board from the public board-list?

And who deleted the messages?


the goal is to keep this free from messages that refer to legal advice.

@cornouws : That seems disingenuous, since the initial post in this thread, with the decision text, refers to legal advice. @PaoloVecchi 's reply contested the statement in the decision text - with a claim regarding the legal advice - and his message was deleted.

Personally, I don’t believe any legal advice is necessary to find the power to dismiss a vice-chairperson in the body which appoints the VCP; but legal advice or no - dismissal needs strong cause, and I don’t know that such cause has been provided.

@PaoloVecchi : I don’t know what the iceberg is, I only know what we’ve been told. I don’t even know that I’d support Emiliano’s position if there is a particular situation that triggered this, rather than the general inter-factional strife.

The rationale given internally by the chairman had no connections with reality and just a shameful attempt of inventing faults for Emiliano.

That rationale must be stated publicly, according to our statutes (8.3.c) ; but - we got a rationale in the decision text. How can you know of a different rationale, if you weren’t part of the session in which the decision was taken?

“As advised” means that someone on the Board sought, obtained, and then acted on, legal advice in regard to the possibility of removing the person in question.

It seems to be in the public interest to know what that advice contained, even more so to the extent that the Satzung appears to contain no such possibility. At the very least, there must be an indication of the legal basis on which such a decision could be made without acting outside the Satzung.

Deleting other people’s questions is not the way to show that the Board is acting transparently, rather it smacks of censorship.

Could you please indicate where in the Satzung this is provided for? I note that my previous comments in this regard remain unanswered. Advice was sought, presumably to be able to ascertain how to circumvent the absence of any provision in the Satzung.

If no such provision is made, would that not require a vote on a change to the statutes in order to make such a provision?

It is difficult to understand this habit of discussing all the actions of the board. They are there to take them, and the worst thing they can do is not to do anything.

Aside from the fact that they have the power to take the decision, I know from my own experience how difficult it is to take this kind of decisions.

Miguel Ángel.

1 Like

Hi Eyal,
I’ve always learned that it is a habit out of respect to not do everything in public.

The ideas that you have around the procedure, are not correct. Clearly the situation has been discussed with Emiliano. Even various times over a longer period with multiple people involved. Also all directors were able to participate in the vote. And rest assured that Paolo has brought forward his ideas and opinions on the situations repeatedly and in different forms. The board decided different, and it is known that for Paolo it is not easy to accept that.

You seem to ask for the procedure around this.
Posts on the forum can be flagged and then looked at by those with moderating rights. And for this category that are all directors
Furthermore you may have noticed that there has been discussion in the past about Paolo’s posts, even resulting in moderation for some time.
You will understand that these differences in ideas, despite us having a Code of Conduct, on what a correct behavior of people on this forum is, gets some attention also in the board. Also the fact that it is the rule that directors [support boards decisions(Why support a decision if I disagree?) is not new. Public discussion (let alone attacking) by a director should be exceptional, and not a rule, as is the case with Paolo.

Hi Eyal,

Again you are jumping to conclusions. Instead of asking, if your assumption is correct, you state it as a fact - which is again not true. The vote was conducted by email, and both non-voting directors were present.

Can we please, going forward, all try to interact a bit more positively?

Best, Thorsten

Hi Eyal,

Good that you ask this. The reference to legal advise was part of the motion the board approved; therefore it is published.

That’s indeed an unfortunate combination. Attacking the boards decision in public and then opening a debate around legal advise, is something we should avoid to protect the board’s work.


Hi Eyal,

It is your right to ask for that information, but it’s also my right, according to statutes § 8 c, to state that the details should be kept private, as long as the decision is published. It is incompatible with my idea of volunteering in a community project, to have the details, level & gravity of personal attacks (from all sides) that have been going on inside the board, exposed to the public.

Best, Thorsten

Despite the obvious that Eyal describes, someone in the board thought it useful to get this into a legal discussion. The result there, gave the board sufficient ground to take the decision.

Debating the boards legal advise in public is quite impossible, and attempts to abuse that impossibility to ‘prove one’s right’ are ‘not done’.
Our statues ( § 11 (3)) give clear rules on how complaints reg. a board decision should be handled.

I’ve always learned that it is a habit out of respect to not do everything in public.

Well, we could have a philosophical debate about this, but it’s inconsequential, because that contradicts our statutes, which explicitly require these things to be public (other than exceptional cases, which this is not, and even then ).

Clearly the situation has been discussed with Emiliano

What situation?

Also all directors were able to participate in the vote

There were 5 participants according to the post you published. If @PaoloVecchi and @syntaxerrormmm also participated, they should be listed.