[Osmf-talk] Fwd: Candidacy: OSMF Board

Kate Chapman kate at maploser.com
Fri Nov 24 16:57:54 UTC 2017

On Fri, Nov 24, 2017 at 3:15 AM, Christoph Hormann <chris_hormann at gmx.de>
> For me and according to my observation HOT members (and sometimes HOT
> volunteers working a lot with HOT who are not a member) often seem to
> have a fairly distinct cultural background that manifests in their
> reactions in conversations and that often differs significantly from
> other normal 'mapping their home town' mappers.

Since you've only been involved in OSM since 2013, maybe you don't know the
origin and background of HOT. I started in OSM in 2009 mapping my
neighborhood and running mapping parties in Washington DC, where I lived at
the time. I was the one who actually incorporated HOT as an organization.
The reason at the time was really simple, the OSMF wasn't in a position to
take on money for projects and those of use that had been working on OSM in
Haiti wanted to accept a check to continue doing that.

> I don't know enough about how HOT works practically to analyze this in
> more depth but my working theory is that when you spend a lot of time
> on a project like HOT or Wikipedia you pick up on certain things in
> terms of communication style and problem solving approaches and if
> you - afterwards or in parallel - get active on OSM you tend to
> unconsciously transfer these experiences.

I can't speak for everyone involved in HOT, but I think it is possible that
many people long involved in HOT have more global experience, which
certainly changes methods and view. I for example have lived in another
country, on another continent from the one I originate. I think specifying
another continent is important in my worldview.  Since in Europe for
example you might move to the country next door. I live on the West Coast
of the US, though I'm from the East Coast. I live quite far from my family,
but still in the same country.

> Now there is nothing wrong with that in principle - it is not different
> from the behavioural particularities everyone has because of their
> individual background and as a culturally diverse community we should
> welcome and accept all of this.  But as Stefan said it needs to be
> balanced in intensity.  OSM has over the years developed its own
> distinct cultural traits in terms of style of communication, problem
> solving methods and other things.  Changing and developing these should
> happen from the inside - welcoming outside ideas where they are deemed
> useful and steadfast in matters where we can be rightfully proud of our
> culture.  And not with the native culture being displaced by singular
> dominant external influence.

Who is to say what the native culture is? Since I've "only" been involved
in OSM for 9 years at this point am I not part of that culture?

> If i am right about this you resigning from HOT membership would indeed
> not change anything - even if it would be a visible statement of
> course.  I don't think many people would brand you as a 'HOT-gal'
> forever if they see you engage with the local and global OSM community
> as one of them.

What does it mean to interact with the global OSM community as a
'HOT-person'? I have attended and organized SotM-US, met with and spoken
about OSM on 5 continents (Americas, Europe, Asia, Africa and Australia in
case people are wondering). I'm part of the local community in Portland,
Oregon. Though I get the feeling it doesn't matter, besides nobody should
have to justify that they are in the 'in crowd'. Does being in the 'in
crowd' mean that I send tons of emails on the mailing list? That is the
only thing I can really see that would differentiate me. Frankly I find it
an ineffective way to communicate.

> It is not my place to judge how HOT organizes itself and as i have said
> before i find the payment hurdle of the OSMF membership to be a
> significant issue regarding democratic representation but in terms of
> openness and transparency there seems to be a huge difference to a
> closed membership where existing members have to deem you worthy to be
> accepted into the inner circle.

I think of membership by invitation differently. I wonder how many more
people would join the OSMF if they were personally invited to join. What if
someone came and said "you really care about OSM, we'd love for you to join
the OSMF?" I think there are advantages to that method and it allows
recruiting people that might never think "oh they meant me!"


> --
> Christoph Hormann
> http://www.imagico.de/
> _______________________________________________
> osmf-talk mailing list
> osmf-talk at openstreetmap.org
> https://lists.openstreetmap.org/listinfo/osmf-talk
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