[OSGeo-Discuss] Proposed process for selecting OSGeo charter members

b.j.kobben at utwente.nl b.j.kobben at utwente.nl
Mon Jun 23 12:33:23 PDT 2014

I am very dissapointed in this whole membership/fees discussion. In
reading the emails one does not see the international volunteer community
I would like to think OSGEO is (should be), but it rather seems we are
dealing with a US-based professional organisation, mostly keen on not
paying US taxes, and that is not what I want OSGEO to become...

Barend Köbben 
ITC - University of Twente
PO Box 217, 7500AE Enschede (The Netherlands)
+31-(0)53 4874 253

On 23-06-14 21:00, "Alex Mandel" <tech_dev at wildintellect.com> wrote:

>On 06/19/2014 11:58 AM, Peter Baumann wrote:
>> Hi all,
>> good - and important! - discussion!
>> Being Charter Member I am somewhat concerned:
>> - I am surprised that the common democratic procedure of election is
>> perceived as creating "dissent".
>Well it's somewhat conjecture without public confirmation that someone
>walked away from OSGeo because they didn't get picked.
>> - yes, democracy is expensive, but generally it is considered worth the
>> effort.
>> - is "lifelong membership" compatible with community participation?
>Nope and we've actually have discussed in the past what the rules should
>be to weed out charter members who no longer particpate in the community.
>> - "Recognised OSGeo Community Leaders" seem to get determined in a very
>> special, selective way (as compared to standard election procedures).
>> Altogether, the criteria seem to make OSGeo a self-sustaining group:
>> insiders will remain insiders for a lifetime, outsiders will...well,
>> face a hurdle.
>> So the contrary of "open".
>> Just an idea: what about applying the OSGeo incubation checklist to
>> OSGeo itself to determine feasible procedures?
>> cheers,
>> Peter
>I think the discussion of membership fees is timely this year now that
>we officially have our IRS 501c4 status. Why, well when we were aiming
>for 501c3 that would have given us donations as tax write offs for US
>members. Without that incentive to donate, membership now seems like it
>might be the way to push individuals to donate.
>The amount should be researched quite a bit though, factoring in how to
>reach maximum membership, with lowest overhead (collecting and tracking
>membership will incur a cost).
>Since we don't maintain a huge office, an in print journal, a lobbyist
>or things like that we should be able to be much lower that other
>professional societies. I agree it should be relative to country of
>members, and there probably should be some sharing in places where local
>chapters exist - or the local chapters trust us to split the money back
>to them for things they need.
>I'd suggest something in the $20-$30 US, students $5-$10. Maybe with a
>sliding scale like PBS or Kickstarter, where if you voluntarily pay more
>in a given year you get swag of some sort.
>I'm trying to avoid the syndrome (I'm guilty of this) where one pays for
>membership only in a year when it will get you a discount worth more
>than the membership for the conference.
>I agree with Arnulf that these decisions should probably go to e-vote of
>all the current charter members, the boards responsibility is to put
>forward a coherent plan for the vote. Obviously if the board all hates
>the ideas it should stop there for now.
>Discuss mailing list
>Discuss at lists.osgeo.org

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