[Board] motions from June 18 meeting - making OSGeo Charter membership more exclusive

Vasile Craciunescu vasile at geo-spatial.org
Sat Jun 20 10:21:28 PDT 2015

I get Cameron's point of view. Personally, I really don't want to leave 
valuable people "outside" just because they are not "popular" enough or 
because they not recommended to the charter members by a popular figure. 
Myself, I'm not from on a country with notably contributions in term of 
code to the FOSS4G realm. I do really know that passion for FOSS4G is 
not always enough to make a person noticeable in the eyes of the 
community (especially if you are not a programmer). On the other hand, 
why do we call the process "elections" if we always accept all the 
nominations? We really need to have some kind of mechanism to assure 
that "proper" people are elected as charter members, people that really 
understand and share the values promoted by OSGeo. If the mechanism is 
right, all the "good" people will get elected (most probably, all people 
proposed). Of course, there is no easy path to achieve this. I agree 
that changing the rules of engagement just before the elections is not 
the best approach. But, I also recall that, since the board meeting in 
Portland, the 5% rule was contested by an important number of board and 
charter members (not always on public channels). My proposal is to delay 
a bit the elections schedule for this year (not sure if bylaws permit 
this) or shorten the nomination/voting periods in order to have a real 
consultation on the topic with the OSGeo community. Postponing the rule 
amendment for an entire year may find us in the very same situation one 
year latter in 2016 (as Jeff already mentioned, nobody had nothing to 
reply to his message from May). I encourage all the board/charter 
members to express their opinion on this subject. If you do care, please 
talk now.


On 6/20/15 1:59 AM, Cameron Shorter wrote:
> OSGeo board,
> As an OSGeo Charter member, I request that the following motion (see
> below) not be passed without first discussing publicly on the OSGeo
> Discuss email list.
> The current process for joining OSGeo Charter Membership [2] was
> specifically refined to be more inclusive than before, in order to make
> it easy for all passionate people within the OSGeo community to join,
> while aiming to protect against the now relatively unlikely possibility
> of a hostile takeover.
> Based on the proposal below, 11 out of 64 of last years successful
> nominations would be rejected under the  proposed new rules. I suggest
> this is not in OSGeo's interests.
> It is possible that some of these 11 people are not very involved in
> OSGeo, and maybe haven't contributed much since being nominated, but is
> that a bad thing? Have any of these 11 people been actively detrimental
> to OSGeo while being an OSGeo Charter member? Note, the only official
> duty of a charter member is to vote for the board. However, being
> recognised as a charter member is useful for many of our members looking
> to gain OSGeo credibility, such as when presenting at conferences.
> If we are more inclusive, and add 10 new non-active/non-disruptive OSGeo
> Charter members, then I'd argue that it is worth it for the 1 passionate
> Charter member we also gain.
> I remember a quote from Jeff which rang true with me, and which I think
> is applicable here:
> /
> //"I once heard an interview with a legendary lead singer of a band, who
> said his goal each concert was to make the kid sitting in the very back
> row to feel like he's as much a part of the concert as the kid sitting
> in the front row, and this is exactly how I focus my community work for
> OSGeo."/
> http://lists.osgeo.org/pipermail/discuss/2014-August/013498.html
> Warm regards, Cameron Shorter
> On 20/06/2015 5:29 am, Vasile Craciunescu wrote:
>> Dear all,
>> Please also vote for motion below.
>> 5) For the new charter members elections, change the threshold of
>> required YES votes of charter members from 5% to 50%. See Jeff's
>> e-mail [1] for detailed explanations and the rationale of this change.
>> If needed, also check the Membership Process [2].
>> My vote is +1.
>> Best,
>> Vasile
>> [1] http://lists.osgeo.org/pipermail/board/2015-May/012863.html
>> [2] http://wiki.osgeo.org/wiki/Membership_Process
> On 26/05/2015 2:18 am, Jeff McKenna wrote:
>> 3. Decide on 2015 Selection Process
>> -----------------------------------
>> To refresh everyone's memory, last year we (Board) modified the
>> selection process[3] for Charter members; but in my opinion we made a
>> mistake with the voting change of "Each candidate with more YES votes
>> than NO votes, and greater than 5% of voting charter members voting
>> YES for them, will be included as new charter members."
>> What I saw was, for the first time in OSGeo history, strategic
>> nominations by certain projects, for relatively unknown community
>> members; the result was that all 64 nominations were accepted as
>> Charter members.
>> For 2015, I am proposing we make 1 change, instead of the 5%
>> acceptance, change that to 50% or greater voting YES.   Such as:
>> ***
>> Each candidate with more YES votes than NO votes, and greater than or
>> equal to 50% of voting charter members voting YES for them, will be
>> included as new charter members.
>> ***
>> I have checked the 2014 results again, and with those new 50% rules,
>> we would have accepted 45 nominations versus all 64 nominations.  I
>> believe this is much better.
>> But of course this needs to be decided by the Board and community.  I
>> am merely kicking off the process   So please speak your mind, or edit
>> the 2015 Elections wiki directly.
>> Yours,
>> -jeff
> --
> Cameron Shorter,
> Software and Data Solutions Manager
> LISAsoft
> Suite 112, Jones Bay Wharf,
> 26 - 32 Pirrama Rd, Pyrmont NSW 2009
> P +61 2 9009 5000,  Wwww.lisasoft.com,  F +61 2 9009 5099
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Vasile Crăciunescu
geo-spatial.org: An elegant place for sharing geoKnowledge & geoData

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