[OSGeo-Discuss] Free Workshop Tickets @ FOSS4G

Jody Garnett jody.garnett at gmail.com
Tue Jun 19 17:02:51 PDT 2018

Thanks for the background Mark.

Keep in mind that that OSGeo projects and committees also have a budget,
many indicated that they would assist their members with foss4g travel
and/or accommodation. For context OSGeo does ask that each project officer
attend the AGM (or send a community member to speak on their behalf).

I am one of the individuals who submitted a workshop in the hopes of
earning a conference ticket. I have enough notice that I will be able to
sort out the gap. I would like to acknowledge that earlier in my career
finding a way to earn a foss4g conference ticket was a way for me to attend
foss4g events (run a workshop, save up half the year, sofa surf based on a
generosity, etc...). For the FOSS4G 2013 event you mentioned I joined the
video team.  I recognize that this was a case was I was giving up my time,
since I had more time then money.

Personally it takes me five days to prep a 1/2 day workshop. One reason I
would like to continue to support instructors is so they take that prep
time, but perhaps we could find a balance where financial support is more
directly tied to preparation. Do something like hire an designer to help
with diagrams if initial course milestone is met etc...
Jody Garnett

On Sun, 17 Jun 2018 at 12:31, Mark Iliffe <markiliffe at gmail.com> wrote:

> Hi All,
> Firstly… we’re super excited to be welcoming you all to Dar es Salaam this
> August… it’s going to be amazing!!
> Secondly, at the end of last week, there was a very good discussion on
> Twitter about free tickets at FOSS4G [1] - there are numerous threads that
> span from here with good comments for offering free tickets to workshop
> presenters and keynotes and against.
> I’d like to explain why we made the choice not to offer free tickets to
> workshop presenters.
> When we were putting together the workshop program, we were overwhelmed by
> the quality and quantity of submissions received by the call. We received
> 73 submissions and accepted 27. This was incredibly difficult as we wanted
> to widen the scope of content within the workshop program (aka… not have
> the same as last year) and balance new presenters with established ones.
> Everything was a compromise to establish this program, but on balance I
> believe (and I hope you as the community will agree), that we got the
> balance right.
> We have the stated aim in our proposal and since that we want to use
> FOSS4G in Dar es Salaam to widen participation of many under-represented
> groups within our community - as a global community, we need to be as
> diverse as the world. Part of the economic impetus within the DLOC is to
> widen access and participation - this means working out how to achieve
> that. Bluntly, if we want to have a conference with the same content and
> people, we shouldn’t be holding this in Dar es Salaam.
> As many, (but not all), workshop presenters are from companies sponsoring
> their travel to FOSS4G (offering workshops that directly relate to services
> offered by their employer), the drive to widen participation, with previous
> conferences not offering free workshop tickets (Nottingham in 2013 for
> example) and no stated promise to offer free tickets for presenters, I led
> my committee and we resolved to not provide free tickets to presenters.
> However, potentially this is wrong - and I’d like to stress as a
> volunteer(and unpaid!) conference chair/organiser, we’re capable of getting
> things wrong… but we/I want to ensure that it’s put right.
> In effect, there is no profit from the workshop tickets, effectively, this
> pays for the conference venue and the food and drink for the workshop days.
> The cost of this is roughly $75. We’re charging $75 - this is cheaper than
> previous workshops! To offer a free ticket to workshop presenters, we would
> have charged $100 and reclaimed the cost of the workshop presenter ticket
> from there. We charged as low as we could, because we recognised that for
> some attending FOSS4G, $25 can be a very large difference… but for
> others... not at all (hence the donation button for the Travel Grant
> Programme!). But, to widen participation, we need to be as inclusive as
> possible and that means making hard choices.
> We’re being inclusive by raising the number of TGP attendees from 10 in
> Boston to 51 for Dar. As the DLOC, we’ve booked the YMCA for our TGP
> attendees - this means that the TGP this year can support micro-grants,
> paying $250 to support the bus travel, food, and drink of a community
> member in Uganda that ordinarily would not be able to get to the conference
> in theory on their doorstep - because of this, every little helps, saving
> $100 here, $300 there etc. This may sound like hyperbole, but it’s a direct
> and concrete way that FOSS4G is widening access, in both economically
> disadvantaged and gendered situations.
> Ultimately: If you are a workshop presenter at FOSS4G this year and are
> unable to get your ticket/want a free ticket, please get in touch with me - *we’ll
> sort you out and make it right.* If this has given the impression that we
> are taking advantage of our workshop presenters - *it is not the
> intention, nor the case and we’re sorry*.
> Going forward, I’d recommend there be a further discussion within the
> conference selection process on whether workshop presenters, keynotes etc
> are given free passes and clarify whether it should be one way or the other
> - but that is not for me or my committee to decide! It’s 70 days to go to
> the best FOSS4G yet… and we’ve got a conference to put on!
> Thanks to all of you who make this community great :-)
> Best,
> Mark
> [1] https://twitter.com/sarasomewhere/status/1006304174332661760
> _______________________________________________
> Discuss mailing list
> Discuss at lists.osgeo.org
> https://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/discuss
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://lists.osgeo.org/pipermail/discuss/attachments/20180619/4d3ba952/attachment.html>

More information about the Discuss mailing list