[Osmf-talk] Membership fee waiver

Simon Poole simon at poole.ch
Thu Nov 15 06:49:46 UTC 2018

Only the board would know (and I don't remember seeing anything in the


Am 14.11.2018 um 23:53 schrieb Rob Nickerson:
> Any idea if that has happened yet Simon?
> Thank you,
> Rob
> On Wed, 14 Nov 2018, 22:20 Simon Poole <simon at poole.ch
> <mailto:simon at poole.ch> wrote:
>     Forgetting all about making it easy and so on, there is currently
>     IMHO no reason a potential member couldn't apply for a waiver, it
>     would simply need to be decided on a case by case base.
>     Simon
>     Am 14.11.2018 um 23:08 schrieb joost schouppe:
>>     Hi Rob,
>>     I can't give an account for the first three years, but I can
>>     share my perspective about the last. I specifically joined the
>>     MWG a year ago to help push forward the waiver fee program.
>>     Over the last year, most of the volunteer time has gone to
>>     keeping the engine running. There were deep problems with the
>>     management software for membership (civicrm), which made it easy
>>     to lose members. There was a weird problem with reminders about
>>     lapsing membership. Since we do not have a self service area,
>>     people depend on these reminders. It was a hard problem to fix,
>>     which involved a lot of cooperation between people, as well as a
>>     lot if discussion about whether or not to hire consultancy to fix
>>     it; or even to make sure they could actually work if hired. 
>>     At all the meetings I attended, I brought up the waiver fee.
>>     There always seemed to be new barriers to just start with it. A
>>     form, a procedure, default lettres, membership classes. Since the
>>     meetings were rather spread out, you also lose time with bringing
>>     back to mind all the details. Since a lot of the work required
>>     knowledge about the inner workings of the software, there wasn't
>>     a lot of work I could do as a not so technical newbie. When there
>>     were things I could do myself, my own time constraints came in
>>     the way - as well as recently finding out a lot of thinking work
>>     we did together was lost because we used an exotic open source
>>     tool that disappeared from the internet. 
>>     So my analysis if the last year would be: too little volunteers
>>     to do the actual work, and a lack of efficient workflows. 
>>     IIRC we did get several board checkups on the waiver fee and the
>>     occasional call to think bigger.
>>     I don't think there is anyone to blame, except maybe if you start
>>     looking for the root causes of our lack of volunteers. Since I
>>     don't want to turn this into my position statement for the Board
>>     elections, I'll hold that thought for now. I will say that this
>>     experience is what led me to try and revive the local chapters
>>     group as a community building group. This group would try to work
>>     in and with the other working groups to support and push relevant
>>     projects forward. Unfortunately that try has not really resulted
>>     in much just yet.
>>     All the best, 
>>     Joost 
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