[OSGeo-Discuss] FOSS4G2016 and diversity

Andrea Ross andrea.ross at eclipse.org
Mon May 30 16:48:16 PDT 2016


That's an unexpected response. Was someone suggesting OSGeo should be a 
forum for human rights?

Kind regards,


On 30/05/16 17:28, Cameron Shorter wrote:
> All,
> While I'm hugely in favour of mutual respect, and I personally 
> co-authored the OSGeo Code-Of-Conduct, I feel that OSGeo shouldn't aim 
> to be a forum for human rights. (There are other places for this).
> Our primary focus should be on supporting the creation of great OSGeo 
> code, and supporting the communities doing this.
> Having a Code-Of-Conduct in place is a small part of supporting a 
> community, and we should refer to it in cases where conversations or 
> interactions deviate from good behavior, but I'm hopeful that we can 
> leave it at that, and focus our time on our core code writing passions.
> Warm regards, Cameron
> On 30/05/2016 7:30 pm, Marc Vloemans wrote:
>> Thanks Andrea,
>> You are quite right, unfortunately. Sharing and discussing 
>> experiences and insights on this could come across as negative.
>> The same happened when I read an earlier discussion on a Code of 
>> Conduct for conferences. Frankly I was abhorred that such code was 
>> deemed necessary. Until I realised that I was perhaps ignorant 
>> (living in Amsterdam is such a privilege).
>> Can I invite you to share your list-of-thoughts regarding potential 
>> pitfalls for a Conference at least with me 
>> (marcvloemans1[at]gmail.com <http://gmail.com>)? It would be such a 
>> shame if we unintentionally overlook the obvious!
>> Cheers,
>> Marc Vloemans
>> Op 30 mei 2016 om 03:49 heeft Andrea Ross <andrea.ross at eclipse.org> 
>> het volgende geschreven:
>>> Marc,
>>> I started to write a whole bunch of thoughts related to this but 
>>> instead decided against as I felt it was stating the obvious and I 
>>> didn't want the thoughts to be perceived as negative.
>>> The essence was that these things  you have listed are great, and 
>>> they help keep things from being screwed up, but they're not the 
>>> hard work that it takes to really make a difference. So good, but so 
>>> much more is needed.
>>> Kind regards,
>>> Andrea
>>> On 28/05/16 11:26, Marc Vloemans wrote:
>>>> Dear all,
>>>> To build upon the positive results as mentioned in the thread 
>>>> below, I invite anyone to supply any suggestion that may support 
>>>> the LOC FOSS4G 2016 in Bonn Germany, regarding diversity related 
>>>> policies during the actual Conference. Either directly to me or via 
>>>> this list.
>>>> As LOC we strive to be aware that public policies and personal 
>>>> experiences vary per continent, region, country and/or province. 
>>>> However, living in Western-Europe we sometimes are unaware how 
>>>> fortunate we are! That could hinder us in anticipating potential 
>>>> fears, uncertainties and doubts that visitors to Bonn may have.
>>>> For starters, please note the following from 
>>>> https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/LGBT_rights_in_Germany :
>>>> "Germany has become the first country in Europe to enact a law that 
>>>> allows German citizens to choose to neither identify as male or 
>>>> female on their birth certificate, which has been said to 
>>>> specifically benefit hermaphrodites 
>>>> <https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hermaphrodites> and intersex 
>>>> <https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intersex> persons."
>>>> Unfortunately same sex marriage is still 'under construction', but 
>>>> that does not reflect negatively on a number of laws protecting the 
>>>> rights of the LGBTI community (including registered partnership).
>>>> Best regards and hopefully we meet in Bonn,
>>>> Marc Vloemans
>>>> Vriendelijke groet,
>>>> Marc Vloemans
>>>> Op 28 mei 2016 om 03:04 heeft Andrea Ross <andrea.ross at eclipse.org> 
>>>> het volgende geschreven:
>>>>> Dear Kristin, Everyone
>>>>> The sex/gender split was similar for FOSS4G NA 2016 as FOSS4G NA 
>>>>> 2015. In the range of 25 to 30 percent women for both speakers and 
>>>>> attendees. We don't ask people their gender as part of submitting 
>>>>> or registering, so this is obviously a best effort from having met 
>>>>> a number of folks, and discretely Google-stalking them just a little.
>>>>> We probably had a record high number of trans people participate, 
>>>>> despite North Carolina's HB2. Also because of HB2, many LGBT 
>>>>> people reached out to me before the conference to understand what 
>>>>> was being done, and to help decide whether to boycott or not. We 
>>>>> are so grateful that so many did not boycott, and came anyway. It 
>>>>> was a moving experience for me to learn how big the LGBT part of 
>>>>> the community is and get a bit of the sense of how important the 
>>>>> work they're doing is.
>>>>> Also, I want to call out the exemplary work of the Raleigh 
>>>>> Convention Center. They really went above and beyond to ensure our 
>>>>> attendees were safe and comfortable. So far as I know, there were 
>>>>> zero instances of harassment of LGBT people. Laurie Okun from the 
>>>>> Convention Center in particular was a superstar and so impressive 
>>>>> & professional from our first contact when trying to assess 
>>>>> Raleigh, through the chaos that HB2 inflicted, and to the 
>>>>> post-conference follow-up. We are grateful.
>>>>> So many good things to note. I also want to note that it is still 
>>>>> a mostly white conference. So the job is not done, and there's 
>>>>> still much more important work to be done.
>>>>> Kind regards,
>>>>> Andrea
>>>>> On 27/05/16 17:28, Kristin Bott wrote:
>>>>>> Thanks for sharing the synopsis; I'm especially encouraged by (1) 
>>>>>> gender (identity) parity in the planning committee (2) strong 
>>>>>> presence of female-identifying folk at the conference and (3) 
>>>>>> continued financial support for attendees.
>>>>>> I'd be curious what the gender split was across attendees v. 
>>>>>> speakers -- possibly something worth tracking across years of 
>>>>>> conferences to get a sense of any shifts in attendee demographics.
>>>>>> cheers -
>>>>>> -k.bott
>>>>>> On Fri, May 27, 2016 at 7:09 AM, Mark Lucas <mlucas17 at mac.com> wrote:
>>>>>>     I had the pleasure of serving as the OSGeo representative for
>>>>>>     the 2016 FOSS4G NA conference selection and planning.  I
>>>>>>     thought the team did an excellent job in selecting, planning
>>>>>>     and running the conference.  The team made the decision to
>>>>>>     not pursue a 2017 NA conference so as not to compete for
>>>>>>     resources with the OSGeo international conference.  Our
>>>>>>     efforts will focus on 2018 planning and selection for the
>>>>>>     next NA regional conference.
>>>>>>     On a personal note I was initially concerned about how the
>>>>>>     relationship with Location Tech and OSGeo would evolve.  Our
>>>>>>     teaming has resulted in yet another successful conference
>>>>>>     that I believe plays to the strengths of both organizations. 
>>>>>>     I was very pleased with the openness and collaboration that I
>>>>>>     witnessed.
>>>>>>     — Mark
>>>>>>     The synopsis from Andrea Ross is included below:
>>>>>>     FOSS4G NA 2016 Synopsis (please feel free to re-use this data)
>>>>>>      *
>>>>>>         The conference ran from May 2-5, at the Raleigh
>>>>>>         Convention Center, in Raleigh North Carolina. The code
>>>>>>         sprint & unconference ran May 6 & 7 at Red Hat’s
>>>>>>         headquarters, a few blocks from the convention center. A
>>>>>>         Tour of the NCSU OSGeo Research and Education lab took
>>>>>>         place on May 6th.
>>>>>>      *
>>>>>>         The conference featured 1 day of workshops, 3 days of
>>>>>>         sessions, a code sprint, an unconference, and social
>>>>>>         events every night. There were 93 full length (35 minute)
>>>>>>         sessions, 36 short length (15 minute) sessions, 10
>>>>>>         workshops, and 3 keynotes. This represented an increase
>>>>>>         in full length. The rooms were generally always near full
>>>>>>         or slightly overflowing for particularly popular talks,
>>>>>>         despite them being big rooms.
>>>>>>      *
>>>>>>         The conference grew by 33% . There were 558 attendees.
>>>>>>         This level of increase is very positive, when so many
>>>>>>         other conferences are in decline.
>>>>>>      *
>>>>>>         Like 2015’s team, 50% of the 2016 committee were women.
>>>>>>         Also like 2015, a significant proportion of speakers and
>>>>>>         attendees were women (in the 30% range), which is great
>>>>>>         to see.
>>>>>>      *
>>>>>>         23 people were at the conference who wouldn't have
>>>>>>         otherwise been without the financial support we gave them.
>>>>>>      *
>>>>>>         From the attendee survey, people were clearly thrilled
>>>>>>         about the conference... 99% positive feedback. (n=102).
>>>>>>         The one negative response said they were disappointed
>>>>>>         there was no lunch served. We’re not sure how they missed
>>>>>>         it! The venue, the strong program, and the positive &
>>>>>>         supportive atmosphere were the things people commented
>>>>>>         (positively) on most.
>>>>>>      *
>>>>>>         People loved the keynotes, and especially Tamar Cohen's
>>>>>>         entitled Extreme Mapping.
>>>>>>      *
>>>>>>         The video recordings of sessions are being uploaded to
>>>>>>         Youtube, with dozens up, and more each day.
>>>>>>      *
>>>>>>         90% of sponsors rated the value excellent. 10% rated it
>>>>>>         very good. The layout of the conference was especially
>>>>>>         appreciated as it meant plenty of traffic for sponsors at
>>>>>>         all times.
>>>>>>     This year’s conference was produced by Andrea Ross and the
>>>>>>     team at the Eclipse Foundation, the same as 2015. Sarah
>>>>>>     Cordivano served as Community Chair. Rob Emanuele was Program
>>>>>>     Committee Chair, repeating the same role he performed in 2015.
>>>>>>     _______________________________________________
>>>>>>     Discuss mailing list
>>>>>>     Discuss at lists.osgeo.org <mailto:Discuss at lists.osgeo.org>
>>>>>>     http://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/discuss
>>>>>> _______________________________________________
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> -- 
> 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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