Baronial Polling FAQ

Where do I return my poll?

If you received a poll in the mail then it came along with a pre-addressed envelope. Just add your postage and return address — then drop in a mailbox! If you have lost your envelope, or have downloaded a non-member/non-resident poll online, the return address is listed in the text of the poll at the top of the page.

– OR –

Polls can also be returned by email to — please use Barony of Cleftlands in the title of the email so it is easy to sort. (Also read below about submitting comments via email.)

PLEASE return your polls via your choice of ONE  of these options (not both!)

Can more than one poll be returned at the same time?

WHEN MAILING: If you are mailing your polls, more than one may be sent at the same time so long as they are sent on time and with the proper postage (about 4 single sheets mail for a standard rate.)

WHEN EMAILING: If you are submitting your poll via email, it is preferred to receive one email per member to keep track of counts. (Also read below about submitting comments via email.)

When should I send my poll back?

Your poll has a deadline indicated at the top of the page in really big bold letters. If they are not postmarked or delivered electronically by 11:59 p.m. (EST) on February 23rd or they will NOT be accepted by the polling deputy. As soon as your poll arrives in the mail, complete it and send it back to ensure that it is postmarked by the date indicated.

I did not receive a poll in the mail and I feel as though I should have, what should I do?

If it has been longer than a week since polls mailed, contact your local representative who is assisting with the polling (likely your group seneschal) to let them know immediately. Do not wait until the week before they are due! You can help them out in advance by checking:

  • Your membership status — If your membership was unpaid or has lapsed, when the polls were mailed, then you were not considered ‘active’ status and would not have received a poll. You should fill out a non-member poll (see next question below.)
  • Your address —  If you’ve recently moved, did you update your address with the Kingdom’s membership office? If not, it’s likely your poll was returned for an incorrect address.
  • Your zip code — Is your zip code considered part of the group being polled by the Kingdom’s documentation? You can review those zip codes on the Kingdom Cartographer’s website at this link.

I am not an active SCA member OR I am not a resident of the local group, but I want to express my feelings?

All commentary from the populace — regardless of member status or residency — is appreciated. Leadership and transfer of group status can influence or affect more than those who reside within its borders. If you feel as though you have information pertinent to the decision of the polling group and would like to share it with the Crown, you can complete a “non-member/non-resident” poll which can be downloaded from the Kingdom Seneschal’s page on the Midrealm.

When should I use the box labeled ‘abstain’?

Use the box marked “abstain” when you feel you do not have information about the candidate or situation. Abstentions do not indicate a negative polling result and instead tell us that you feel you know little or nothing about the individual or the situation and feel as though you should not comment. It would be helpful to indicate why you choose to abstain from choosing a number through a brief written comment on the form. This is a good way to express, for example, you reside within a group you do not participate in, but have received a poll — and have no opinion on the situation.

I think all of the candidates are great — and any one of them would be fine as the next Baron/Baroness, should I still return my poll?

That’s GREAT that you feel that way — please complete your poll and let the Crown know that! It’s important that these polls are returned to show that the populace is invested in the life and livelihood of keeping the group active.

I don’t really have an option one way or the other…should I still return my poll? OR I don’t ‘play’ in this group so I don’t really care, should I still return my poll?

YES! Please complete your poll and send it back! It’s ok to not have an opinion about the situation but still complete your poll so we know that it has been received and that there are people being reached in that area. Groups can only be determined by zip code and active membership status. Returning your poll helps to gauge the activity level of the populace in that area. If you feel you need to say you belong to another group on your poll, then go ahead and make that comment. (Also read above about marking “abstentions”) 

Do I HAVE to write comments?

No… don’t have to…but it would be great if you did! Returning your poll is part of a ‘civic’ responsibility to the Society, the Crown, and the group where you currently reside. Exclusively circling numbers on your poll expresses only your opinion and not the rationale and feelings behind your decision.

When sending comments by email, they can be written directly in the body of the email ALONG WITH A COPY OF YOUR POLL. Comments may also be included as an attachment. Please be sure to title your document with your name and your Barony’s name in the file name and within the body text of the document.

I received a poll for my child (children), what do I do?

If your child is a paid member they will receive a poll. It is suggested that you allow your child to complete the poll on their own without your assistance — and, ideally they are age 12+. If your child is too young to have an opinion or you prefer them to leave them out of the process as a minor, please mark “abstain”. All polls are counted towards the total response rate for the group in which you reside — so it is important that even if no opinion is expressed, these polls are returned.

Why are polls still sent in the mail?

Currently, this is how opinions are solicited from the populace in an effort to be respectful of each member’s privacy regarding their opinions and their personal information. It is also the only method the SCA has in place to contact paid members of a specific membership area. The Group Transition Deputy is looking into alternative ways to gather opinions from the populace in regards to group changeovers.