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What to make of Ross Mayfield's open call for an executive to replace him as CEO of Socialtext, the wiki-software startup? When a founder leaves the CEO role, venture capitalist Fred Wilson has argued, we should say that he's "stepping up," not "stepping down," citing the example of LinkedIn chairman Reid Hoffman. But Mayfield wants to stay on as the company's president, a position of lower rank. It's perhaps a sign of humility that Mayfield would step down to being president. But he'll also stay on as chairman — which would make him simultaneously the new CEO's direct report and boss. It's odd that Mayfield would search openly for a CEO, rather than just announce a replacement once he's identified one. But perhaps Mayfield's murky new role is discouraging candidates. Until he decides whether he's stepping up or stepping down, Socialtext's top spot is one no would would want to step into.