[Osmf-talk] Question to board members

Andy Robinson blackadderajr at gmail.com
Wed Aug 22 16:47:04 UTC 2012


Just one word of warning. Board meetings have to comply with the Articles
and company law. I'm not sure an IRC log will suffice or not. That would
need clarification. Certainly any resolution/vote at a Board meeting needs
to be dealt with properly.

However Board meetings don't need to happen that often. Their purpose is
essentially administrative in line with operating the Foundation as a
Company limited by Guarantee. Management meetings on the other hand are
where there is a lot more room for scope and why I was encouraging the
distinction between the two types of meeting a year or two back.

 

Cheers

Andy

 

From: Mikel Maron [mailto:mikel_maron at yahoo.com] 
Sent: 22 August 2012 17:40
To: Richard Weait; osmf-talk at openstreetmap.org
Subject: Re: [Osmf-talk] Question to board members

 

Hi

 

> Which of these was most effective in terms of accomplishing the
> business of the board, ability of members to attend, and minimum
> burden on board members?

Really, the intention of forming the Management Team was to reduce burden on
Board Members to high level decisions, official duties, strategy. MT would
open regular business decision making to more OSMF members, and facilitate
more dialogue between working groups. Board would then meet maybe quarterly.
That was a great idea, but then no one showed up to MT.

 

I think there was, and still is, confusion about the role of the Board,
other members of the Foundation, and the Foundation as a whole. That really
needs distinct written clarity ... none of this is comprehensively and
objectively documented, but captured in various minutes and mailing list
posts. Makes decision making confusing. And decisions need to be made, with
a reliable method for canvassing the community for opinions. This just
doesn't magically happen ... the OSMF is the manifestation of the OSM's
community will for things to happen for OSM.

 

Minimum burden on Board members. It's about doing things smarter, not simply
doing things less. It does involve being pro-active, but with the support of
the community. It requires more foundation members to step up and give their
time. Something like the MT is a good idea, but I'm not sure exactly how it
will work. But in order to do all this, we need to be organized smarter. And
that's not going to happen without an investment of effort and probably
money to fix the status quo of OSMF.

 

The license change took what, 4 or 5 years? It's *almost* done. One of the
key things that happened was hiring Andy Allan to finish the redaction bot.
We have to recognize that in select situations, volunteer time is not going
to do it. And it's not a substitution for volunteers, but rather a way to
organize and set the pace. Once Andy was driving the process, you actually
saw an increase in volunteer coding (in contrast to the accepted wisdom of
"poisoning the well"). We need to identify more situations where a little
intervention gets things moving.

 

> Which approach to future board meetings would you prefer to see?

Face to face meetings are crucial. If you are running for Board, I think you
should expect to give up time to travel at least once over the year to meet
your fellow Board members.

 

Otherwise, I would suggest meetings move to IRC. I think conference calls
are a big time sink. And more discussion and decisions made over email, with
a reliable methodology.


> How much time did you commit to board meetings and other obligations?

It varies. Maybe on average, 1 day of the month.

> And, if you are looking for an opportunity to write an essay, how do
> your accomplishments with the board align with any of your previously
> published manifestos or position papers?

 

Poorly. We're still in the status quo that OSMF has been in the past four
years. We're stuck on mostly the same problems, no reliable way to resolve
them. Things need to change, constructively, with leadership that has a
practical approach.

 

-Mikel

 

* Mikel Maron * +14152835207 @mikel s:mikelmaron

  _____  

From: Richard Weait <richard at weait.com>
To: osmf-talk at openstreetmap.org 
Sent: Wednesday, August 22, 2012 12:04 PM
Subject: [Osmf-talk] Question to board members


Dear All,

With the board election upon us, and a year full of accomplishments
wrapping up, I have a few quick questions for all board members.

Background: the board has tried to find ways to meet effectively, even
while being in various time zones, and having many obligations outside
the board.  Regular board meetings have been have, at different times,
been scheduled:

- weekly
- biweekly
- monthly
- ad hoc / spontaneously

Which of these was most effective in terms of accomplishing the
business of the board, ability of members to attend, and minimum
burden on board members?

Which approach to future board meetings would you prefer to see?

How much time did you commit to board meetings and other obligations?

And, if you are looking for an opportunity to write an essay, how do
your accomplishments with the board align with any of your previously
published manifestos or position papers?

Best regards,
Richard

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