[OSGeo-Discuss] Hacking OSGeo

Jeff McKenna jmckenna at gatewaygeomatics.com
Tue Sep 16 07:38:47 PDT 2014

Hello everyone,

To clarify publicly, I have no problem with LocationTech, and in fact I 
feel that its foundation plays an important role in our ecosystem.

The issue actually boils down to OSGeo's only event, FOSS4G.  We, as 
OSGeo, present this event each year and it is a large part of our annual 
revenue.  It is very important to the OSGeo foundation, as it is our 
flagship event.

It was made clear to me that LocationTech is not interested in having 
their own global event, and that they are in fact interested in our 
event, FOSS4G.

So maybe to remove this stress, or "fear", I would prefer to pull back 
on the throttle, start with an MoU between the two foundations, and then 
begin to share booths at events, or donate booths at each other's 
events.  In other words, take baby steps, and build the relationship 
slowly, as we do with every other foundation.

I apologize for not bringing this issue to the community sooner.  In 
fact this all really came to a head in Portland, and you can see that 
now we must deal with this all together.

I always try to represent the entire OSGeo community well, if you feel 
that I have made mistakes please share this here with everyone.  I am 
here to represent you.

The last few days have been very hard on me.

OSGeo President

On 2014-09-16 11:01 AM, Andrew Ross wrote:
> Dear All,
> Discussions started informally back in 2011. By 2012, there were more
> formal discussions ongoing including a face to face meeting with Michael
> Gerlek who was appointed by the OSGeo board to represent OSGeo. I wanted
> to say publicly that Michael's work was extremely professional and I was
> very impressed.
> I believe it's fair to say reaction was similar back then. Many people
> saw many positives in working closely together. Some asked if the two
> organizations could be one. Like today, there were some who were very
> fearful. Those that supported working closely together felt it was best
> not to push too hard. Discussions have continued since then over the
> past 3-4 years focusing on specific collaboration on a case by case basis.
> During that time, LocationTech has sponsored and its projects
> participated in 2 FOSS4Gs. It was asked by an OSGeo board member to
> organize FOSS4G NA 2015. It has provided discrete feedback to OSGeo
> projects regarding intellectual property related issues in OSGeo
> projects so they could be fixed. OSGeo projects were well represented on
> the 2013 LocationTech tour and again in 2014. I hope these things are
> seen as a significant positive force.
> I would like to draw attention to the fact that LocationTech's growth
> has not taken anything away from OSGeo. In fairness, building upon what
> Steven Feldman eloquently put, the problems OSGeo faces are problems
> today were faced before LocationTech existed, and since.
> It's fair to say there is tension to collaborate more closely since the
> strengths of OSGeo & LocationTech complement each other despite some
> overlap. LocationTech & the Eclipse Foundation are *offering* to help
> solve some of the problems we've been talking about in OSGeo for many
> years. It's been 4 years and the offer hasn't been withdrawn nor really
> pushed despite fearful attempts to portray it as otherwise.
> Andrew
> On 15/09/14 20:28, Venkatesh Raghavan wrote:
>> On 9/16/2014 10:48 AM, Richard Greenwood wrote:
>>> I don't get it, and my question is moot at this point in time, but why do
>>> we need a new foundation? Why couldn't OSGeo have provided what
>>> LocationTech purports to provide? Was there any discussion, or awareness,
>>> in the OSGeo board prior to the formation of LocationTech?
>> Very pertinent questions form Rich. I hope we will receive some lucid
>> answers.
>> Best
>> Venka
>>> Rich
>>> On Mon, Sep 15, 2014 at 4:18 PM, Jeff McKenna <jmckenna at gatewaygeomatics.com
>>>> wrote:
>>>> Arnulf,
>>>> I definitely agree that both foundations fill a role and need to exist.
>>>> The point I am trying to make is that we have the power to change OSGeo,
>>>> if we feel some needs are not being met well.
>>>> I used too strong of words again, I am sorry.
>>>> -jeff
>>>> On 2014-09-15 2:59 PM, Arnulf Christl wrote:
>>>>> Hash: SHA1
>>>>> Jeff,
>>>>> I believe that Daniel is actually right in what he says - given that I
>>>>> understand the point he is trying to make. There are differences
>>>>> between OSGeo and LocationTech and trying to talk them away will not
>>>>> get us anywhere. And its not "bad" or "goo" either way, we just
>>>>> operate differently.
>>>>> The point is that in OSGeo you cannot move anything at all as a
>>>>> business, not directly. In LocationTech you become a corporate member,
>>>>> pay money and in return have influence over certain things and get
>>>>> support. Directly geared towards your specific needs. OSGeo does none
>>>>> of those things.
>>>>> As an individual (with or without business) you can become the
>>>>> committee chair and an OSGeo officer with absolutely no preconditions,
>>>>> no money needed, no organizational backing and no other hierarchy.
>>>>> Just because othes think you are doing a cool job and have accumulated
>>>>> enough merit to go ahead as a leader. This would not work in this way
>>>>> in LocationTech.
>>>>> Both ways have reasons to exist and are good. Right?
>>>>> Cheers.
>>>>> Arnulf
>>>>> Am 2014-09-15 10:45, schrieb Jeff McKenna:
>>>>>> On 2014-09-15 1:22 PM, Daniel Morissette wrote:
>>>>>>> the members in OSGeo are individuals and the members in
>>>>>>> Eclipse/LocationTech are businesses
>>>>>> Daniel this statement is not true, regarding OSGeo.  OSGeo members
>>>>>> are made up of all walks of life, and many are running private
>>>>>> businesses all around the world.  I have visited their
>>>>>> organizations/offices myself in my FOSS4G travels throughout the
>>>>>> years.
>>>>>> However I cannot change how you feel.
>>>>>> This part is unfortunate, these strong statements made publicly,
>>>>>> which I feel are made to divide our community.
>>>>>> Let me reinforce: our OSGeo community and our FOSS4G events (of
>>>>>> all sizes) are geared for everyone and anyone, with no sole focus
>>>>>> on one type of community.  And as the President of OSGeo, I am
>>>>>> happy to represent all of the members, of any kind :)
>>>>>> -jeff
>>>>>>   _______________________________________________

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