[OSGeo-Conf] liability

Cameron Shorter cameron.shorter at gmail.com
Thu Jun 18 15:30:59 PDT 2015

The OSGeo Board guaranteed most earlier global foss4g events (with the 
exception of the failed Beijing event). Luckily all the sponsored events 
have been profitable.

The board addressed this topic or guarantees a few years back, and 
collated into:

referenced from: http://wiki.osgeo.org/wiki/FOSS4G_Handbook#Guarantees

Conferences are financially risky events. They need to be planned well 
in advance, and you are never sure how many people will turn up, or 
whether some global event will have a substantial impact on 
registrations. Consequently, conferences such as FOSS4G require 
financial guarantees up front in order to secure a venue. To support and 
enable these conferences, OSGeo will endevour to retain sufficient 
capital to offer such guarantees for any FOSS4G event requesting it. If 
OSGeo's support is requested, then OSGeo would expect these events to 
budget for a modest profit under conservative estimates, and for OSGeo 
to retain profits from such events. To date, such profits, while 
relatively modest, have been OSGeo's primary income source.

On 19/06/2015 4:46 am, Eli Adam wrote:
> On Thu, Jun 18, 2015 at 11:29 AM, Darrell Fuhriman <darrell at garnix.org> wrote:
>>>> If OSGeo is getting the benefits of any proceeds, they need to be assuming
>>>> the liability as well.
>>> I agree with this.  I'd have to reread contracts (or get a lawyer's
>>> opinion) but I think most of the liability is already largely on
>>> OSGeo.
>> This was the case for Portland, and was part of the contract signed with the VTM Group (the POC) and OSGeo.
> Agree.
>> The LoC *couldn’t* accept any liability, because the LoC was not a legal entity, and to ask the LoC members to accept personal liability is obviously ridiculous.
>> So far OSGeo’s FOSS4G operating model is essentially this:
>> 1) "Anyone want to run a conference for us?"
>> 2) Choose one of the people who offer to do it and delegate
>> 3) Give them a pile of money
>> 4) Hope for the best
>> 5) Profit(?)
> If Darrell and I are in the bar, I'm prone to handing him my wallet,
> saying "here's 40k, see you in a year with 100k", then I slap him on
> the back and say "good luck!"  His reactions range from a mild glare,
> a gentle laugh, and occasionally a frothing at the mouth rant.  This
> model although very stressful for the LOC and chair, generally appears
> to work.
>> If (5) instead becomes “Lose money” that’s on OSGeo, and that’s as it should be, because if (5) is “Profit” it gets all the rewards, too.
> But more seriously, yes (5) is/should not be "Profit(?)" but "Profit
> or loss".  As I said before, I'm not convinced that this is not
> already the case.  We can certainly clarify this in the RFP which will
> go out soon for 2017.  Feel free to join in on the RFP process
> details, https://lists.osgeo.org/pipermail/conference_dev/2015-May/003012.html
> Eli
>> If Gaia3d (presumably) is accepting any direct financial or legal liability for FOSS4G 2015 that is a *major* problem in my mind.
>> d.
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Cameron Shorter,
Software and Data Solutions Manager
Suite 112, Jones Bay Wharf,
26 - 32 Pirrama Rd, Pyrmont NSW 2009

P +61 2 9009 5000,  W www.lisasoft.com,  F +61 2 9009 5099

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