Disagreeing it the road to progress. I remember that communists used to says that. They really knew the meaning of propaganda.
But if the board members enter this with preconceived notion the whole endeavour is doomed to fail ... then yeah ... it IS going to fail.
True, but if it is doomed to fail, then it will
In my view, an unbiased association would not have its members involved directly in hosting. Conflicts of interests can appear and influence decisions in ways you can never imagine.
It would really only take one reviewer to determine if the host is conducting business as per their stated "rules of operation".
At the Olimpics they use more than a single judge. In a court of law a jury is formed by more than a single person. There are valid reasons for that.
Also, a host might provide good service to its customers but behave in a despicable way from other business/professional points of view: some companies mass phone people based on whois info.
The dedicated server is a reality and a popular hosting product. Testing such a service from a regular company can easily cost hundreds of dollars if the service is fully managed.
Testing uptime is another important issue. All customers want to know about uptime levels. Testing a server out of 50 servers a host might have, is not a reliable measurement on which you can make a judgement on their uptime. There are as many uptimes as servers and in fact, as many uptimes as services on that server (email, mysql etc)
We then have the problem of testing as a method of deciding whether a company is good or not. Remember that a seal is a "go with them you're safe" kind of vote. The real test is not when things go smoothly. The real test is when things actually go wrong. How a company deals with such situations, what they learn out of it, what procedures they create to handle difficult scenarios etc.
To give a seal/badge is not a difficult thing to do. To have that seal really means something, is very difficult though.
In my opinion, cheap is not a price--it's the kind of service and product you get.
Correct as a general statement, but taken to particular it doesn't hold water. Would you go with a host offering 1000GB of bandwidth and 100GB of space for $5/month?
All that said, I can imagine a group of hosts creating an association and basically saying "we're good guys" and where new hosts could join by invitation only. However, the underlying purpose of that association would not be the one we're envisioning here, but a more practical one. Such is business.