[Osmf-talk] Microgrants conflict of interest: an apology

Allan Mustard allan at mustard.net
Tue Feb 2 23:30:54 UTC 2021

Good feedback.  Thanks, Simon.  We are hoping for more such constructive
feedback of the microgrant program before trying it again.


On 2/2/2021 6:06 PM, Simon Poole wrote:
> Am 02.02.2021 um 20:50 schrieb Pete Masters:
>> Hi Simon, do you mind clarifying the PS? I'm not sure what it refers
>> to.... 
> Assume that for the a project I submit an application that says
> something like
> ... doing X will require 40 hours of my time that I'll charge that at
> the bargain rate of $50/hour or whatever.
> Project gets accepted and I can do with the money whatever I want, for
> example purchase the new computer that I need to get the work done and
> keep it after that.
> or I submit for the same project an application that says
> ... doing X will require computer hardware that will cost ~$2'000,
> time is volunteered.
> Project gets accepted and I purchase the computer, but I don't get to
> keep it once the project is completed.
> The rule that hardware purchased via the grant scheme needs to handed
> over to the community was surely made with the best intentions, but it
> creates an imho an untenable difference in how the projects are treated.
> Simon
>> Cheers,
>> Pete
>> On Tue, 2 Feb 2021, 16:02 Simon Poole, <simon at poole.ch
>> <mailto:simon at poole.ch>> wrote:
>>     Am 02.02.2021 um 16:24 schrieb Rory McCann:
>>     > On Tue, 02 Feb 2021 15:44, Simon Poole <simon at poole.ch
>>     <mailto:simon at poole.ch>> wrote:
>>     >> Well better late than never, but naturally the damage has
>>     already been
>>     >> done given that it wasn't exactly secret that grants had gone
>>     to groups
>>     >> with close ties to the board.
>>     > Huh? how do you mean “close ties”? OSM is small in some ways.
>>     It wasn't obvious to me at the time of the vote that there were
>>     CoI issues.
>>     Well to some it was glaringly obvious.
>>     >> The amazing thing though, is not that there are people seeking
>>     grants
>>     >> which would cause CoIs with board members, but that such
>>     requests were,
>>     >> and continue to be, permitted applications. They should have
>>     never been,
>>     >> I will share the blame in not noticing that appropriate rules were
>>     >> missing way back, allowed in the first place.
>>     > We're going to require that applicants do the work of telling
>>     us of potentional CoIs with the board so we don't have to do the
>>     work.
>>     >   
>>     > Surely if full CoI rules were followed it shouldn't matter if
>>     someone close applies, because no-one close will vote. right? In
>>     theory it would be the same as if the relevant board member
>>     wasn't on the board.
>>     I would agree if we are talking about normal contracts etc.,
>>     however the
>>     micro-grants scheme is a competitive bidding process in which the
>>     applicants are competing with each other and clearly stricter rules,
>>     providing a level playing field, should apply. As everywhere else
>>     that I
>>     know of for similar competitions.
>>     So, no close relatives in the micro-grant committee, OSMF
>>     "contractors"
>>     and board, and no involvement of individuals of those three
>>     groups in
>>     the applicants project. We are not just talking about direct CoIs
>>     here,
>>     close links to all three groups will have the potential to
>>     influence the
>>     decisions, if not actually, so definitely in appearance.
>>     Simon
>>     PS: if the rules get changed and if there is a next time: could
>>     the the
>>     ridiculous unequal treatment of people that sold their time and
>>     got to
>>     keep the funds vs. those that didn't charge for their time be
>>     addressed?
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