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

Charles Gregory chuq at chuq.net
Mon Oct 27 23:41:52 UTC 2014

Hi everyone,

Some info from the Wikimedia world may be of interest.

The WMF board meets in person three times a year.

- Once at the annual Wikimania conference (July/August) - various locations
around the world
- Once at the "Wikimedia Conference" - historically a private chapters
meeting, but the scope is slowly expanding (April/May) - has always been in
Europe, so far
- One other time (I think it is at the WMF offices in San Francisco in
November, not sure)

The board is very geographically diverse (nine members scattered between
USA, Europe, South America, India) so this isn't cheap.   Obviously the WMF
has a much bigger budget than OSMF.  However, in comparison, a once-a-year
meeting for the OSMF board - which is currently comprised of predominantly
Europe-based members - isn't unreasonable.

On a smaller scale, the chapter I'm a member of (Wikimedia Australia) will
generally have one in-person meetup a year for strategic/annual planning
purposes.  Since Australia is similar in size to the US lower 48 states
(you probably know that.. I'm talking to a bunch of mappers here!) this
isn't cheap, usually costs about A$4-5k (A$ is pretty close to US$) all
up.  We've found the years where it hasn't happened we haven't worked as
well as a group, getting to know people in a face to face environment makes
it easier to work when you are back online with them for the rest of the


Charles (User:Chuq)
Hobart, Australia

On Tue, Oct 28, 2014 at 9:08 AM, Michael Collinson <mike at ayeltd.biz> wrote:

> On 27/10/2014 17:21, Joseph Reeves wrote:
>> I want the OSMF to be doing big, exciting and inspiring things. OSMF
>> should be ran by the best people from the OSM community, and they should be
>> hiring great members of staff to fill the gaps that volunteers can't. OSMF
>> should be getting huge amounts of funding and doing great stuff with it. A
>> map that anyone can edit was a pretty mind blowing idea, please continue
>> with the innovation; I have enjoyed reading Steve's call for "try new
>> things" (full disclosure: I have one of his GPS prints hanging on my wall)
>> even if I don't agree with many of his finer points.
> I am shooting off the thread topic but I think injecting some positive/big
> idea stuff is helpful in coping with our current growing-pain pain.
> There was a fantastic key note speech at SOTM EU in Karlsruhe. I think it
> went over a lot of heads as he introduced many different concepts and,
> well, you don't expect keynotes to be heavy-hitting thoughtful intellectual
> pieces. This one was:
> Dr. Dirk Helbing: Keynote: How to Create a Better World
> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I_Lphxknozc
> He starts to develop a theme at 10:36 and gets to specific OSM big-ideas
> at 25:40.
> Mike
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