[Osmf-talk] Paying Board/WG was: Standing for board election

John Crowley bostoncello at gmail.com
Sun Nov 26 11:30:00 UTC 2017


Up to a certain organizational scale, I agree with you. It is possible to
manage many crowd-based communities with volunteers. However, once a group
takes on responsibility for providing reliable services at a global scale,
with industries of small, medium, and global businesses depending on the
underlying infrastructure and millions of contributors, amateur structures
break down.

Either a company is going to pay people to devote time on OSM or people are
going to have to be paid by OSMF to work on OSM. That is our adaptive
challenge: acknowledging the strengths of community that got us here, while
building structures that will allows us to continue to scale. We will have
to preserve as much of what we have as is possible, while designing
structures that will serve us for a decade or more into the future.

- John

On Sun, Nov 26, 2017 at 12:03 PM, Christoph Hormann <chris_hormann at gmx.de>

> On Sunday 26 November 2017, john whelan wrote:
> >
> > OSM is evolving and there are many vested interests at play.  Once
> > upon a time there were "gentlemen of leisure" who would dabble in
> > such things as the board.  The gifted amateur if you will.  These
> > days they are out of their depth.
> The question you need to ask yourself if you believe that is if you
> think the same applies to the OSM community as a whole.
> If that is the case it would mean we would essentially be on the same
> path as Wikipedia - which would be a fairly bleak perspective.
> If not you would have to ask yourself how the OSMF could function with
> the board not even approximately representing the OSM community.  Note
> the OSMF has no parliament like representative body.  We have the OSMF
> members but they are not representative for the OSM community and they
> have no real legislative or budgetary power.  The only real power the
> members have is electing the board and if you professionalize the board
> this would of course be further limited.
> Lets not forget: The source of this topic coming up again (it is not
> that this has not been discussed in the past) is that there are
> relatively few volunteers willing to do OSMF work.  Paying people would
> be an attempt to work around this problem, not solving it.
> The question apparently no one dares to ask is why there are so few
> volunteers (i.e. why is OSMF work unattractive for the volunteers in
> the OSM community of which we evidently have quite a few).
> I see the fact that the OSMF depends on volunteers from the OSM
> community for any other than relatively trivial generic work (like
> accounting and basic administrative stuff) as a big plus because it
> keeps everyone on the OSMF reliably grounded and prevents people from
> encapsulating themselves within their own small world separated from
> the reality and mundane problems of everyday life in OSM.
> --
> Christoph Hormann
> http://www.imagico.de/
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John Crowley
jcrowley at post.harvard.edu
bostoncello at gmail.com
mobile: +1 617.784.3663
skype: johnrcrowley

“You cannot solve a problem from the same consciousness that created it.
You must learn to see the world anew.” -- Albert Einstein
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