[Osmf-talk] Conflict of Interest

Gervase Markham gerv at gerv.net
Thu Jul 30 19:10:49 UTC 2009

On 29/07/09 22:43, Frederik Ramm wrote:
> It is a good discussion to have among us OSMF members but I do not view
> the OSMF as having any "leadership" component. The OSMF is not expected
> or required to have a vision, nor to provide any sort of guidance for
> the project - just to assist the project where such assistance is asked
> for.

Yes, I think this is the fundamental difference between our positions.

You see the OSMF as a support organization for the leadership which 
other people will assume and the direction that they will set within the 
project itself. I see the OSMF as the natural home for those who rise to 
positions of leadership and direction-setting.

(I'm assuming you don't think the project should have nobody doing 
leadership and direction-setting!)

This seems to me in some way analagous to your attitude to tagging, 
where my understanding is that you are also opposed to people doing 
things that look like formal leadership. It does make me wonder how, in 
your vision, OSM actually decides to do something - is it that anyone 
can decide to do anything and try and persuade people to join them, 
except for if they are on the OSMF Board?

> If, for example, there were a country where people are simply not
> interested in OSM and no OSM community establishes itself, then that's
> just fine, we'll wait until it eventually happens

As Nick says, how would OSM have started if that was the plan?

> I wouldn't expect
> OSMF to compile a list of "problem regions" together with an action plan
> on how to improve the map there. I wouldn't even expect OSMF to analyse
> why OSM doesn't work in that country - if it doesn't then it doesn't, no
> reason to get upset about it.

I would expect it to do both those things and more. I wouldn't expect it 
to feel it has the power to tell people "do this", but I would expect it 
to start initiatives and explain to the community why they are a good 
idea, and encourage people to support them.


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