[Osmf-talk] sponsored membership

joost schouppe joost.schouppe at gmail.com
Wed Sep 27 14:15:53 UTC 2017


One easy way to increase membership diversity is to reduce the financial
burden. We've talked about it a lot. I didn't manage to find the old
thread, but did anything come from previous discussion about sponsored
membership? I.e. if you apply to be a member of OSMF but don't have the
money, you can still become one.

Assuming there wasn't, here is something that to me feels like a really
very simple thing that isn't perfect but would help right now.


The logic is that people who become member, usually do so just because they
feel like they should, not because of the immense added value of being a
member. These people might as well spend twice as much, if it means someone
who can't afford to, can join our ranks.

So a very simple proposition: make it possible for a person to pay the
price of two memberships, with the express condition that someone is
allowed to join for free in return.
The safest is possibly to just allow donating into a pool, and then have
people applying for the open spaces created in that pool.

The alternative would be that the donator chooses to whom it goes. But that
might seem paternalistic and opens the door to worries of influence-buying,
especially if institutional donors would open their purses.

There wouldn't be any need for a vetting of applicants, because the donator
would do this under the express condition that the free memberships would
be served on a first-come-first-served basis.

I'm looking forward to hear about all the obvious things I didn't think
about :)

Joost Schouppe
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