[Marketing] Re: [Board] Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Defining an OSGeo Ambassador role

Cameron Shorter cameron.shorter at gmail.com
Fri May 11 07:13:16 EDT 2012

I can see that there are at least 2 interpretations of "Ambassador" 
which seems to be clouding the issue. It might help if we refined as:

Senior Ambassador:
* Someone with extensive OSGeo qualifications, probably a board member, 
or ex board member, but might be extended to a select few others. 
Ideally will have excellent communication and presentation skills.
* This role will keynote conferences, and negotiate on behalf of OSGeo 
(eg for a MOU).

General Ambassador:
* One of the thousands of OSGeo leaders, developers and users who are 
passionate about Geospatial Open Source, who wishes to promote OSGeo
* These people will present on behalf of OSGeo at one of the hundreds of 
relevant conferences and workshops around the world.
* Selection of this role could be anyone who applies, or could be 
limited to a voted group, such as Charter members.

On 11/05/2012 12:16 PM, Daniel Morissette wrote:
> I think it's a good idea to try to better define the role but I have 
> no clue how to do it right. FWIW here is what I wrote about this 
> question during the board meeting:
> "i think for the ambassador label to have some value then it needs to 
> not be too inclusive otherwise if anyone can name themselves an 
> ambassador then we'll need to create a new label for the real higher 
> profile "ambassadors" that event organizers will want to go after"
> "for the time being [i.e. until a better mechanism can be defined], 
> I'm happy with ambassador being someone appointed by the board to 
> represent OSGeo at an official function or event, with or without 
> funding. The first examples that come to mind are Arnulf's various 
> ambassadorship duties, and MPG's upcoming meeting with Eclipse"
> Daniel
> On 12-05-10 7:05 PM, Cameron Shorter wrote:
>> As per Board logs discussing Ambassador role:
>> http://irclogs.geoapt.com/osgeo/%23osgeo.2012-05-10.log
>> 17:51:48 archaeogeek: We need to go back to Cameron too- but not be too
>> discouraging...
>> 17:52:08 darkblue_b: it seems Cameron is following the Board list
>> Yes, I did catch up on the board IRC logs as have been monitoring the
>> board email list. (Meeting at is 3am, which doesn't work well for me).
>> Re discussion around definition of the Ambassador role, I'm more than
>> happy to see the role being completely redefined from my original 
>> proposal.
>>  From logs, I'm hearing what people don't want from the Ambassador role,
>> but I don't think someone has clearly defined what is wanted.
>> Regarding funding, I think that by default, we should assume that no
>> travel funds are allocated to Ambassadors. This will result in either:
>> 1. Conferences paying for highly experienced ambassadors as keynotes
>> 2. Conference attendees, who are already ambassadors (and usually local)
>> acting as presenters
>> 3. In special cases, such as sending someone to set up an Eclipse MOU,
>> the board may approve one of the highly qualified ambassadors (a board
>> member, or maybe a charter member)
>> With regards to setting up a process for selecting quality ambassadors,
>> the tricky part is in setting a criteria for which we exclude people.
>> There will always be volunteers wishing to be an ambassador, who is
>> going to say someone is not qualified?
>> Do we introduce the overhead of another annual vote, getting the
>> community to vote for the 10 best ambassadors?
>> Do we ask the board to approve or not approve applications from
>> individuals to become ambassadors? It could be politically very
>> alienating for individuals to be rejected by the board for such 
>> requests.
>> We then need to work out how Ambassadors are refreshed or retired. I
>> propose that every year Ambassadors are removed, from our list. If
>> Ambassadors still consider themselves active, they may update their
>> profile, and re-introduce themselves into our Ambassador wiki.
>> Working around these limitations was what drove the proposal of:
>> * Allow any volunteer to become an Ambassador
>> * However, support categorisation by voted OSGeo categories (Board,
>> Charter, OSGeo PSC, etc). We could introduce another category of
>> "Entertaining Speaker" or similar, with some associated criteria.
>> * Force a refresh of Ambassador roles every year, and get Ambassadors to
>> update their profile if they are still interested.
>> If someone can suggest a better, more practical idea, then I'd be keen
>> to hear it.
>> On 9/05/2012 6:10 PM, Seven (aka Arnulf) wrote:
>>> Hash: SHA1
>>> Board,
>>> in preparation for tomorrow's meeting please read through the mail
>>> that Cameron sent wrt defining the Ambassador role:
>>> http://lists.osgeo.org/pipermail/discuss/2012-May/010296.html
>>> At first my impression was that this is complicating things a bit (my
>>> thoughts were more like: anyone can become an ambassador). But the
>>> discussion on the lists confirmed that this looks like a good way
>>> forward and addresses most issues brought up. I also like the idea
>>> that Marketing runs with it once the board has decided that the
>>> general direction is in line with our mission and policies.
>>> So far we should be 6 out of 8 directors at the meeting tomorrow
>>> meaning that we have quorum. But even if more drop out we can still
>>> vote via mail which worked quite well over the past few meetings.
>>> Talk to you tomorrow.
>>> Thanks,
>>> Arnulf
>>> On 05.05.2012 07:33, Cameron Shorter wrote:
>>>> Following on from ideas from this previous email thread, and in
>>>> particular picking up on Stefano's ideas, I'd like to make the
>>>> following proposal:
>>>> I suggest that we define an OSGeo Ambassador role very widely, but
>>>> also have different levels of Ambassador - so that conference
>>>> organisors can still feel like they are getting someone
>>>> distinguished and pick someone exclusive.
>>>> The OSGeo Ambassador categories would be:
>>>> 1. OSGeo Board Member 2. Ex OSGeo Board Member These are the elite
>>>> of the OSGeo community. We only have 8 active board members in the
>>>> world, which have been peer selected based upon their outstanding
>>>> leadership in the greater OSGeo community.
>>>> 3. Charter member Charter membership is obtained through a strongly
>>>> contested selective process. Members tend to be developers and
>>>> leaders in one or more OSGeo projects, and/or OSGeo business
>>>> leaders, and have a deep understanding in many of the OSGeo
>>>> projects and principles of Open Source.
>>>> 4. Voted position in an OSGeo community These people hold a
>>>> position of responsibility within one of the OSGeo sub-communities.
>>>> This may be a chair of an OSGeo Regional Chapter, or as a member of
>>>> a project's Project Steering Committee.
>>>> 5. OSGeo community member These people are actively involved in one
>>>> or more OSGeo communities, acting as a developer, user or supporter
>>>> of OSGeo software.
>>>> Anyone fitting one of the above categories, may put themselves
>>>> forward as an OSGeo Ambassador. Each ambassador would be expected
>>>> to create a profile for themselves on an OSGeo Ambassador wiki
>>>> page, which includes:
>>>> * Name * City and Country of residence * Phone, Email * Photo *
>>>> OSGeo relevant experience. (~150 words)
>>>> I also propose that the OSGeo Marketing committee would be
>>>> responsible for overseeing the Ambassador wiki page, once the
>>>> guidelines have been put into place.
>>>> I welcome feedback from all, and call upon the board to make a
>>>> final vote on whether this proposal (or a variant) should be put
>>>> into action.
>>>> On 21/04/12 20:47, Stefano Costa wrote:
>>>>> Il 21/04/2012 12:28, Jody Garnett ha scritto:
>>>>>> I would hope that our charter members (who have been through a
>>>>>> public nomination process in part for their involvement) are
>>>>>> already acting in the capacity of "Ambassador" for OSGeo.
>>>>> I totally agree on this point. The fact that charter members
>>>>> only official role is to nominate new charter members and the
>>>>> Board is IMHO a weakness. Their role as OSGeo champions (and
>>>>> "Ambassadors" if there's consensus on that) should be emphasised.
>>>>> Quick ideas:
>>>>> - personal pages on osgeo.org (osgeo.org/members/johndoe) -
>>>>> @osgeo.org e-mail address (even an alias is fine) to be used as
>>>>> their primary address - interviews on the main blog - a track
>>>>> record of their public activity wrt OSGeo promotion, software
>>>>> development, management, documentation and what else
>>>>> In this way the charter members could gain a higher visibility in
>>>>> the wider geospatial community and be recognised as official
>>>>> representatives.
>>>>> Ciao steko
>>>>> BTW is there any process in place to "remove" charter members if
>>>>> they become inactive, move to another planet or are deemed unfit
>>>>> for the purpose by the community?
>>>>> _______________________________________________ Discuss mailing
>>>>> list Discuss at lists.osgeo.org
>>>>> http://lists.osgeo.org/mailman/listinfo/discuss
>>>> On 20/04/12 07:24, Cameron Shorter wrote:
>>>>> On 20/04/2012 4:06 AM, Michael P. Gerlek wrote:
>>>>>> Do we have any policies and cost structures for the Ambassador
>>>>>> function yet?
>>>>> I've seen a few people talking about creating an OSGeo
>>>>> Ambassador role. Arnulf I think might have been the first to
>>>>> mention it, and I think it is an excellent idea. I'm also aware
>>>>> that the OGC are considering developing OGC ambassadors too.
>>>>> So I'd like to open the floor and see what people think an
>>>>> ambassador's role could involve, which leads into the qualities
>>>>> we would wish our ambassador's to have, which leads into the ways
>>>>> we may select an ambassador.
>>>>> Let me start by noting some of the driving factors: 1. Arnulf has
>>>>> noted that as OSGeo president, he has spent a significant amount
>>>>> of time on areoplanes travelling around the world to talk on
>>>>> behalf of OSGeo. He has suggested that this role should be
>>>>> shared. Conference organisors, who have a primary goal of
>>>>> attracting attendees, look for authoritative figureheads to talk
>>>>> at conferences. They are expected to have a deep insight into a
>>>>> specific domain, such as OSGeo. They should also speak well, even
>>>>> better if they are entertaining.
>>>>> 2. OSGeo is a sexy topic has many conferences, and there are
>>>>> hundreds, if not thousands of conferences around the world which
>>>>> would like to see an OSGeo presence.
>>>>> 3. OSGeo is fortunate to draw membership from around the world,
>>>>> including boasting a number of very healthy local chapters. As
>>>>> such, we are likely to have potential ambassadors in most
>>>>> counties. (We might be a bit short in Antarctica)
>>>>> 4. There are times when negotiating MOUs or similar with other
>>>>> countries, it would be useful to have someone local speak with
>>>>> authority on behalf of OSGeo.
>>>>> 5. Note that there are conflicting interests here of wanting to
>>>>> open up the role for anyone who volunteers, verses maintaining a
>>>>> selectiveness and prestige for the role which is the key
>>>>> selection criteria for conferences asking for an ambassador.
>>>>> As such, I think it important that ambassadors can only be voted
>>>>> into the position, and not handed out to anyone. We already vote
>>>>> for a board, and charter members. I think board members should be
>>>>> considered ambassadors by default. Should charter members be
>>>>> considered ambassadors? Charter members only get this role after
>>>>> demonstrating a commitment to OSGeo, so will likely have a
>>>>> reasonable depth of OSGeo knowledge. Maybe we should ask for a
>>>>> history of speaking well (as demonstrated at conferences), to the
>>>>> ambassador criteria.
>>>>> Then lastly, do we wish to invite ambassadors from a greater
>>>>> circle? At this point, I'd probably err on saying no, as if the
>>>>> entry bar to becoming an ambassador is too easy, then the mystic
>>>>> of the role will be lost.
>>> - -- Exploring Space, Time and Mind
>>> http://arnulf.us
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Cameron Shorter
Geospatial Solutions Manager
Tel: +61 (0)2 8570 5050
Mob: +61 (0)419 142 254

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