Counting your eggs



What did we learn about eggs this summer?

a. chickens lay eggs

b. Craig has chickens

c. you can use eggs to vote for camp

d. all of the above

After our exile from Saugatuck, we set out to look for a new home.  We tried Nissokone and Dekoven and we liked them both.  We needed to decide, so we gathered our eggs and put them in baskets.   When we were done I counted them and told you all which basket had the most eggs.  That winning basket was the vote to alternate between the two locations.

I hadn’t planned to tell the details of the vote.  Before I started the poll I made a conscious decision to only tell you which one was the fullest basket.   I feel that it would be best for our community.

People are understandably passionate about camp and about its location(s).  I heard a lot of strong opinions about camp location long before the poll.  I think there is real potential for this to split our community. I thought only giving the winner would minimize conflict over the poll.  My intent is for us to move forward as a strong and unified community.

But some of you are curious.  What about the other baskets and the other eggs?   I understand.  This vote is important.  Having the numbers might give some of us closure.

I offered to see whether the consensus was to share all the results or just the winning result by doing another poll (since I had to do another poll for Nissokone dates anyway).  Some have been people starting offering their answer for that upcoming poll in the email discussion group.

One big problem with discussing this kind of thing on that email list, is that not everyone there is an active camper.  They don’t want frequent emails discussing  everyone’s choice or opinion.  We can easily lose the connection to our friends that can’t come to camp right now, but might again in the future.  People often unsubscribe from lists with that kind of content.

Unfortunately there isn’t another list right now for discussing things in depth.   So I thought I would move the discussion here.

In the meantime I think giving some more information about our fullest egg basket might be better for the community than waiting till after the next poll.  (We’ll still have a poll to see if people want all the eggs accounted for.)


Seventy campers voted.  

Of those seventy campers, sixty eight had been to camp at Nissokone and/or Dekoven.

Alternating’s basket won with 49.40% of the eggs.

UPDATE (8/24): the egg count poll is done – for results click here 
note (8/15):

I hadn’t realized that people wanted all the answers to the date and activity questions.  That will have to be shared as a list (without names) because it isn’t just numbers.  If we do vote to release the egg counts, I will also share the answers to all the other survey questions.  The first three questions about egg baskets were the only required to answer poll items, and those along with the question about which location first if alternating are how I chose the results.  The other questions about dates, etc. were for my use in working with Nissokone and Dekoven to set up our weeks.  I didn’t use that information for anything else. 

Please continue any discussion about the votes here in the comments rather than on the alumnus list.

14 thoughts on “Counting your eggs

  1. Another excellent idea, Heather! (to move the Egg distribution feedback away from the alumni emails) Thank you!!!! hugs, Maryellen

  2. Now that this discussion has moved, I’m unaware who is in and out of the conversation.  So, I may be addressing comments by people who will not see this. …and if the comments here do not become part of the email Digest, this is likely my last comment here, since the email Digest is the primary way I stay in touch with the community.

    I hesitated to write a reply, but some of the prior comments seemed to be assigning intent, and coloring the discussion in a way that *I* certainly did not intend. Doing so clouds the basic point of what I thought was an innocent and simple question to Heather: “when will the de-identified totals for each survey item be available to share?”

    I asked when, not whether, because, it just never occurred to me that a group like ours would be polled, without having the raw tallies for each survey question shared with the group.  It is the community’s data, to help keep us best informed, to promote transparency, and to make sure that everyone is guided by a fact-based foundation.

    I have participated and conducted scores of polls, and this is just standard practice.  A report like this is the most standard aspect of all polling software. 

    Think about this for a minute. Every time we vote, we receive this kind of data.  I can tell you the raw tallies, by precinct, for the Aug 2nd Ann Arbor primary (including the names of write-in candidates for City Council) and the results of the two ballot initiatives. Publishing data like this are just part of the democratic process. 

    This is NOT about not “appreciating all of the care and work that Heather does for each of us and for our community her good faith and good intentions in doing it” or using the data “to lobby for a revote” or for “more heated discussions of where and when.” It is  just standard practice to be clear and transparent with data like this. The poll was meant to gather informative data for the entire community. The whole community benefits by better understanding how its members feel. 

    Heather, I was surprised to see your lead-in to this discussion:  “I hadn’t planned to tell the details of the vote.  Before I started the poll I made a conscious decision to only tell you which one was the fullest basket.   I feel that it would be best for our community.”

    If you stated that before the poll was launched, I am sorry that I missed it.  I feel what is best for the community is transparency. Data like this just provides insight for the community and helps de-mystify things.

    Sorry, Ray.  I never saw Frozen, but on matters of principle, I’d rather not Let It Go.


  3. Not checking this site except regularly (unless I hear of an update), I hadn’t seen Ed’s reply until now.
    I agree with Ed. I, too, had originally assumed that the tallies for each of the survey questions would be disclosed to the entire group. I think it is in our community’s best interest if there is openness and transparency, and if everyone has access to and can be guided by the data. As Ed said, “The whole community benefits by better understanding how its members feel.”
    with appreciation for our wonderful community and with special appreciation of Heather and all the loving, caring energy and time she devotes to us,
    Bob D.

  4. Ed,

    I am very appreciative that you clarified your reasons for wanting the raw data as well as stating what were not your reasons-that, I think, is a good example of an important and clarifying explanation. It lays to rest concerns and questions that I would have otherwise had.

    Thanks for doing so,

    Sandy A

  5. I was wondering, do the people who don’t want to know, mind if others know, IF the info is only used to satisfy curiosity and provide transparency and NOT as the basis for opening up the issue again? I respect the people who just want transparency. I also want it to be a closed issue and not something that divides the group if the information is shared. Maybe some people personally DON’T want to know the breakdown. Would it be ok with people if the info is only shared with those who ask for it? I don’t know if it would be too complicated to add that as a third option on the poll, or maybe it’s just something to stir people’s thoughts here, or maybe it’s just a bad idea. I just figured I’d put it out there and see if it is useful. I know there is the risk of bad feelings if the info is shared, but there also is the risk of bad feelings if it is not shared. It will be nice when we are past this. (Please no one take that as a criticism…I respect both sides.)

  6. I agree 100% with Ed about wanting transparency. I am not asking for another vote,
    however, I would like to point out that I know more than one person who told me how they voted. These people were more concerned about other people’s choices and wanted to please everyone. They did not necessarily vote their number 1 choice, but picked both camps because this seemed more fair to them. This is called codependency
    and may have skewed the vote. My personal preference would have been 2 years at Nissokone and 1 year at DeKoven. However, I accept the results as they stand and will continue to come to camp wherever it is held.

  7. Heather, why isn’t there a poll option for:

    Provide the raw tallies for each survey question

    This is the most helpful common way polling data is shared.


  8. I really do not care about knowing all the data.

    I am fine with the final decision to alternate.

    If we are sure and give our word that knowing the data will not change the outcome then , fine, give the data. Maybe that will make the final outcome more accepted. Not sure.

    What I DO NTO WANT is for the decision to change once the data is known. I don’t want folks to say – “You read the data wrong – the final answer is this”.

    Dates are fine.


  9. I had no idea that you would want to know the answers to all the poll questions. I will be fine sharing all of those answers as well if the vote comes calls for sharing the results. See the ‘further update’ in the blog above.

    If you’ve already voted in this poll and this changes your vote. Please email me and let me know.
    (justheada at gmail)

  10. Thanks, Heather. Providing the raw tallies for each survey question is the common practice for sharing polling data with those surveyed.

  11. I’m surprised and somewhat saddened to see how some of the responses to a simple request for data (for the reasons Ed specifically laid out), leads to folks not trusting Heather or thinking that people are going to attempt to “change the vote”. That was never the intention. Clarity, transparency, and good up front communication is essential to keeping a community together.

  12. Hindsight is always 20-20. I wish we could have voted Missiconi or Dekoven with our eggs. Then gotten feathers (different than eggs to vote with for whether or not we were willing to share/alternate. If everyone, like I was thinking added a few eggs, to the share pile, the share pile would get the most just because it got a few of each voter. I know it was my mis-thinking of the eggs, but still I was surprised that alternating “won”. I think in spite of everyone good intentions, in the end it is not yet clear.

    I wish instead of alternating yearly we could devote time, energy, and money to helping people to make the longer commute possible for those for whom travel is the interfering factor.

    I am really mad at that clergy man who literally screwed it all up for all–maybe that is what Saug for all means (screwed it up for all). Just joking as it is late at night now.

    Camp is a matter of the heart. love

  13. I like numbers. Here’s what I know so far. 70 people voted which gives us 840 eggs. 49.4% of the eggs were in the “alternate” basket. That means 415 eggs were for alternate and 425 eggs were for one of the other camps.

    I like to interpret the results in this way. We did not have 49% of the campers vote to alternate. We, as a community, voted that alternating between locations was the most fair for all involved. The decision has been made and revealing how the remaining 425 eggs were divided will not change anything.

    Hiding the results in a veil of secrecy will not bring the community together nor will revealing the number break the community apart, in my opinion.

    One of the dangers of keeping things a secret is that we may miss out on a chance to celebrate the awesomeness of our community. Suppose the remaining numbers were 320 to 105. This would indicate that even though one location got 3 times as many votes, we still decided to alternate because that’s the kind of community we are.

    In the end, people will vote with their pocketbook. If location doesn’t matter, then they will go to both. If location is very important, then they will not go to their other choice. Instead of discussing solutions to helping people who may have problems going to the “other” location, we are spending time and energy discussing whether we are allowed to see the results of a poll.

    I know I will be extremely disappointed if the results of this second poll ends up being that we can’t see the numbers for the first poll.

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