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

Christoph Hormann chris_hormann at gmx.de
Sun Nov 26 15:10:54 UTC 2017

On Sunday 26 November 2017, Simon Poole wrote:
> I don't think that it is a particular mystery, essentially the
> mainstay of OSM are people that actually like improving the map
> (likely around 60'000-70'000 these days) plus some developers that
> like working on OSM-associated projects (very small number maximum in
> the low 100s, mostly a subset of the first group).
> Given that most people don't have unlimited time budgets for their
> hobbies, volunteering for the working groups or any other
> non-mapping/non-software related activities simply  takes time away
> from activities which were the reason you got involved in the first
> place. Not to forget that lots of the active contributors are already
> doing similar things at the national/local level.

Sure - and another important reason is probably that a lot of people 
volunteer for mapping and development in OSM because they consider it 
useful and rewarding work they can do in an independent and self 
dependent way - which for many presents a healthy contrast to their day 
job.  OSMF work likely for many appears much more like a normal job 
which is exactly what they do not want to do in their spare time.

Maybe a way to acknowledge that and get more volunteer help under these 
circumstances is to recruit volunteers more often for smaller 
individual tasks independently rather than for general participation in 
a working group.  I could imagine this for multiple items on the 
current and past agenda of the board.  Even for things like DWG work 
(think of a pool of independent mediators the DWG could hand over 
issues to investigate and to attemt mediating them).

You might think: Where is the difference? - That is how we work anyway 
but this is also to a significant extent about perception.  The 
perception of OSMF work for the average mapper is not generally that 
inviting in that regard.  Showing people they can contribute on their 
own terms without having to spend hours on comittee meetings to get 
involved would probably go a long way.

Christoph Hormann

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