[Osmf-talk] The role of face-to-face meetings in the future of the OSMF board

Randy Meech randy.meech at gmail.com
Mon Oct 27 15:21:32 UTC 2014

On Mon, Oct 27, 2014 at 3:38 AM, Christian Quest <cquest at openstreetmap.fr>

> 2014-10-26 23:27 GMT+01:00 Frederik Ramm <frederik at remote.org>:
>> It's nice if we have directors whose employers or companies
>> pay for the trip but we can't assume that to be the case.
> This creates a real conflict of interest problem...
> Why a company would pay a trip for one of its employee to attend a non
> profit organization meeting if nothing is expected on return ?
> If that company wants to help the organization, let it fund/donate to the
> organization and let the organization use it freely and directly.

As someone who can travel on company expense, I would have a problem doing
this for OSMF business. Even if there are no conflicts of interest, the
perception of them outweighs the benefits. Also it's not fair to others who
can't do the same. Therefore, starting with this SotM I'll be paying for my
own travel. But this is also not fair, as not everyone can do this.

I think there's a solution to this for all (below).

> Why not take advantage of SOTM to stay 2 more days to work together ? This
> is also the good timing as new board members have just been elected. This
> allows them to immediately get involved in the board, know the other board
> members in person without delay and share work.
> It is hard for me to imagine a board member or candidate not attending
> SOTM which is a best place to get in touch with an active portion of the
> OSM community and have so many F2F informal meetings !

SotM attendance should be a high priority for OSMF board members, and
tacking on a day or two for an annual board meeting seems like a good &
cost-effective solution.

We're working on a proposal now for the SotM-US, and it includes 80
scholarships including a large number of international scholarships. For
the main SotM, we could include scholarships for current and prospective
board members who needed them, and raise funds for this (not difficult).
Frederik is right that the geographical nature of the board will (and
should!) become more far-flung, so maybe an SotM-centric approach is the
solution to F2F meetings.

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