Romance Contract Revisions

Posted on January 7, 2015

Description:

As a relationship matures and the parties get to know each other there is both an acceptance of who the other person is as well as a deepening knowledge of how to assist that person to be their best self. K. Mike Merrill and Marijke have been in a shareholder approved relationship for more than two years and the contracts have evolved from strict control to more general tenants. We have spent time considering our 2015 goals and resolutions and feel it is the perfect time to propose the following revisions:

http://www.k5m.org/private/Contract-Revision.pdf

The major effect of these revisions is less specific mandates balanced with regular accountability. The same ANALYST from the Romance Advisory Board has been granted the position of AUDITOR and will report to the shareholders on a regular basis on the status of our relationship.

These revisions, once ratified by shareholder approval, shall remain in effect until the end of the current contract on June 19th, 2015.



Past Discussion

aaronpk (1115 shares, voted no)
Presumably the fact that this contract expires in 6 months means that another contract will be created to replace it?
Mike Merrill
I sure hope so! :smile:
egli (7 shares, voted no)
I am concerned by the provision in this contract that allows the couple to form a legally binding relationship without further shareholder input. Former contracts required shareholder approval to enter into a legally-sanctioned marriage, and I believe that clause should be maintained to ensure shareholder oversight of long-term commitments.
aaronpk (1115 shares, voted no)
I guess I was hoping for a more firm commitment to re-evaluate the contract after 6 months. The way it is written now it looks like you will terminate the relationship in 6 months. The only wording indicating further progress is "on a regular basis" but that regularity isn't defined anywhere in the contract.
Mike Merrill
@egli: The revision for including a legally-sanctioned union is designed as pre-approval should the parties wish to pursue such an arrangement. @aaronpk: We actually withdrew the clause about agreeing to consider a renewal as it seemed obvious and was not binding or enforceable. Generally we'd use the contract ending as a time to re-evaluate our relationship, but the new year presented a an opportunity where we talked a lot about our shared vision of the future so we created this revision. The "regular basis" will be initially monthly interactions with THE AUDITOR, but rather than mandate things strictly we've scoped it in a more general manner to allow flexibility. Perhaps once a month will not be enough, or perhaps it will be too much, and we'll adjust accordingly. THE AUDITOR's reports will of course be made public, so the shareholders will have more insight into the nature of the relationship.
Marcus (260 shares, voted no)
First, I want to continue to assert my support for Mike's romantic union with shareholder #160. But I also agree with the contention that pre-approval for a life event as significant as marriage deserves its own shareholder vote. I vote nay until this provision is removed.
aaronpk (1115 shares, voted no)
For anyone else who is reading this forum discussion, there is some more discussion happening in the Slack chat room: https://kmikeym.slack.com/
arijkem (200 shares, voted no)
Get me on that slack convo! No hard feelings, I think it makes sense.
egli (7 shares, voted no)
@kmikeym: Should approval of this revision also be considered pre-approval for the parties to pursue procreation if they so wish?
Jos (6 shares, voted yes)
That's a specious question. Of course this isn't blanket approval for procreation. Those of you who have an issue with the idea of including pre-approval for a marriage (or similar arrangement): why? Why should a separate vote be required? If you want to discuss and vote on the merits of allowing a marriage, fine: do it here. It's not like they're asking for permission to marry someone else. We know the two entities involved. We've approved this relationship (more than once). There are financial benefits to a legal merger, and, given the commingling of finances, living space, and joint title on assets, legally, there isn't much downside (most jurisdictions consider commingling of assets, cohabitation, and joint title for certain lengths of time to be strong enough grounds to treat a severance of such a relationship under divorce rules for division of property, etc. even though Oregon doesn't have a Common Law Marriage act.). Which means that all you're "protecting" by refusing to allow pre-approval for marriage consideration is your right to make Mike come ask us for permission again later. Which, I would argue, from a business perspective, is silly. It's a waste of resources and time - which is always a bad business decision. I have zero problems with pre-approving marriage, should the individuals so desire to make that decision. The biggest problem I have with this amendment is 7.2, as I don't know that the Yours Truly's ADVICE column is still around.
egli (7 shares, voted no)
@Jos my apologies to all that I allowed my question to come off as obtuse or misleading. I was asking this question out of legitimate curiosity, not sarcastically or with any anticipation of a particular answer. Perhaps to you it seems obvious what the answer to my question should be. For me it was not. To avoid seeming specious I will elaborate on the exact issue I was trying to get at: Since this contract revision does not make any mention of which issues in the relationship will warrant future shareholder votes, I am legitimately interested in whether that should be read as blanket approval for anything in the relationship that this contract would allow (which would be a logical extension of what @kmikeym has communicated about its marriage clause), or if we should assume large issues not addressed by this contract will come up for vote in the future if they become pertinent (which would be a logical extension of how @kmikeym has decided which issues to put up for shareholder vote in the past). ---------- As to the issue of asking for a separate vote on the marriage issue, I personally am not opposed to a legally binding relationship, but I think that it warrants having its own question. Or, at the very least it should be mentioned in the question description of the question where it is decided. It feels like a large enough issue that it should not simply be a rider on a contract revision. While we could just decide it here, I personally consider it important to the spirit of the kmikeym project that large decisions like this are appropriately presented to me, the shareholder. I do feel that we need to “protect” our right to have a full, legitimate vote on this matter. To me, that is what this project is about.
Jos (6 shares, voted yes)
@egli My apologies for the strong wording. But the clear difference for me (and I meant to spell this out before, but I've been wrestling with the flu, so my brain is a little fuzzy) is that the marriage issue is specifically mentioned as being authorized by the amendment. Procreation (nor any other major life change not specifically spelled out in the document) does not receive blanket authorization. I agree that not mentioning the pre-authorization clause in the amendment summary smacks a bit of Washingtonian political maneuvering (or good/dirty contract lawyering), and that if it had been mentioned, the flavor of the conversation would likely have changed quite a bit, but I have no issue with the clause in and of itself.
KevinGabbert (2 shares, voted no)
Agreed. Can there be more clarity on "shareholder representative" as well?
abodens3 (77 shares)
My thoughts are about Section 5.2. If the couple has the option to become a legally recognized relationship (engaged to be married) it would assimilate to a public-traded persons' merger. There may not be a huge difference between a relationship and a marriage when assimilating to business but I think it's big enough to suggest a separate vote.