Well, the new year means that CSM X will be winding down and we'll be looking forward to CSM XI. Already many people have announced their candidacy and I wanted to write a bit about some interesting contenders and of course those candidates who shouldn't be running for the CSM.
I'll start, like always, with the wormhole candidates.
Chitsa Jason is running and as an ex-CSM member and member of my corp, I feel it fitting to start with him. I find his candidacy post leaves a lot to be desired however having known him for about a year now, I know that he's very knowledgeable and passionate about the game. He's also one of the organizers of the wormhole NPSI fleets (think wormholer's version of Spectre Fleet) and seems to have friends all over who help him make things happen. You'll note that there's some drama brewing in his thread from other wormholers. I called some of them out on it for talking smack without putting forward candidates of their own, to which I did not receive a reply. (Later, Noobman stepped up, which we'll discuss next.) What I find mildly infuriating is that as people who live in wormhole space, we shouldn't be attacking other w-space candidates. Someone who seriously cares about w-space should be voted for by anyone who lives in w-space, period. Petty rivalries between corps should be left behind when we're talking about the potential betterment of where we live.
As I mentioned, Noobman of Hard Knocks put forth his candidacy for w-space. I know of him in two ways: one, in-game as an excellent Hard Knocks FC and director and two, out of game where he was willing to answer my questions about the Python coding that he was doing when trying to automate his w-space killboard stats. From what I've seen I think he'll be another great candidate for wormhole space.
A relatively unknown (to me) wormhole candidate is Bradford Clear, the alliance executor of P-NAH, a wormhole alliance. He seems promising to me although after reading his candidacy post I find myself itching for more information about what he wants to bring to the CSM. However, another serious wormhole candidate is great for making sure that wormholers are kept in mind when designing things like citadels and making changes to capitals, etc.
Stepping away from wormhole candidates for now, Apothne is running and I'm certain he'll get in. A fantastic FC, incredibly knowledgeable guy and all around good person he'll be great for the CSM.
Steve Ronuken is running again and will certainly be on my ballot as someone who has proven himself time and time again.
Nikolai Agnon has a very well written post about low sec, and we'll be needing a low sec representative now that Sugar Kyle won't be running for a third term (seriously, that is going to be our loss - she's a fantastic CSM). He seems very promising to me.
Gorski Car is running again, and after "filling in" for two half CSM terms I think he's close to getting an actual seat. I'm not too familiar on what he does or what he has brought to the CSMs that he has been a part of, but he's worth watching.
Other interesting candidates right now include Mr Hyde and Joffy Aulx-Gao.
Xenuria is of course running again and there seems to be a movement to elect him for the luls. He's running on a platform of reforming the CSM, but he has yet to describe how exactly he'd want to reform it, what his version of the ideal CSM would function and whether or not it's up to the CSM to push for reform themselves or whether they should stick to their duties and CCP should push through any sort of reform. As far as I'm concerned, it's CCP's job to change the CSM so it works better for them, so a vote for Xenuria is just a wasted vote.
These are my initial impressions of the CSM candidates as it stands right now. I'm sure more will flesh out as we get into campaigning season, with interviews and more questions for them to answer.
I tend to agree that the CSM has fallen on some tough times with CCP as the trust seems to have been broken. I'm hoping the next group can start rebuilding that trust as I still think that the CSM is a useful vessel and sounding board for CCP. We shall see what CSM XI brings us soon enough!