[Osmf-talk] Draft New Corporate Membership Tiers

Dale Kunce dale.kunce at gmail.com
Thu Apr 28 10:00:51 UTC 2016

I like that OSMF is taking on these issues and is working to broaden the
big tent of OSM by offering an option for corporations. The draft is very
good and reflects some good grounded thinking both in what the corporations
and institutions need but also what OSMF can provide. A lot of the talk
here has been about private contact with corporations and the OSMF general
counsel. Both of these are good benefits for corporations to have and
accurately reflect the existing needs of existing and potential corporate
partners. Fred did a great job of framing how the existing relationship
with corporations works. This proposal just formalizes it into something
that is repeatable and more accountable on both sides. If anything it adds
transparency to the process rather than creating some secret network.

Someone previously said that there is an advantage in having the license
remain ambiguous. I completely disagree, the lack of clarity on the license
now is having a negative impact on OSM adoption by corporations,
foundations, and governments. The idea of a single person articulating a
consistent and legalese response on the license is very valuable for OSM.
This is a good thing that corporations want to engage us on the license
that they want to see how and where they can work with OSM within their own
corporate structures. This shows both the strength of the OSM community and
the health of the project. How excited do we all get when we see OSM used
as the map in a taxi cab, airplane, or other place? I would love to see
more folks corporations and institutional actors adopt OSM. As Fred pointed
out we already have good controls if companies don't respect how the map is

One thing that I think is lacking in the draft is a way for non-corporate
actors such as NGOs, foundations, and governments to receive the same sort
of benefits. Many of whom are putting significant resources into OSM
including building new tools, training new mappers, and providing massive
amounts of new data. The current cost structure doesn't match up with how
these actors work so maybe there could be an institutional price for these
folks that are already heavily invested in OSM but giving a donation to
OSMF is hard to budget or impossible to proceed with procurment on.

All this proposal does is formalize the existing process and relationships
and provide much needed funds for OSMF. I'm hugely in favor of it. Its a
good next step in the growth of OSM.


On Thu, Apr 28, 2016 at 5:34 AM, Frederik Ramm <frederik at remote.org> wrote:

> Hi,
> On 04/28/2016 11:11 AM, Tom Hughes wrote:
> > So what exactly are you suggesting that corporate members get over and
> > above what anybody else gets?
> I'd say that the add-on here (over and above what anyone gets for free)
> is a translation into legalese.
> Today, if someone writes to legal-questions they will get a response but
> it will not be a response from someone who speaks legalese and if
> they're unlucky then the person responding might also need a couple
> iterations to actually understand what is being asked when it's in
> legalese.
> The service offered to corporate members is that they can send their
> question in legalese, and a lawyer will look at it and then ask {board,
> LWG, legal-questions ...} about the situation (in normal language) and
> will convert the response into legalese and send it back.
> The service offered to corporate members is *not* that OSMF will
> suddenly commit to things it wouldn't normally commit to when asked by
> someone else. Our lawyer would not be able to, for example, analyse a
> business model and say whether it is compatible with the license or it
> isn't; there will not be a seal of "OSMF lawyer approved business model"
> that corporate members can buy. But our lawyer can help *their* lawyer
> identify the sections of the license that might be crucial to their
> business model. Ultimately it's their call - just like for everyone else.
> Bye
> Frederik
> --
> Frederik Ramm  ##  eMail frederik at remote.org  ##  N49°00'09" E008°23'33"
> _______________________________________________
> osmf-talk mailing list
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sent from my mobile device

Dale Kunce
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