[Osmf-talk] Moving the OSMF to the EU?

Sebastian S. mapping at consebt.de
Sun Jul 4 13:41:40 UTC 2021

I'm leaving the reference to the Document Foundation here since Germany has not been mentioned much.

> Germany as well. "The Document Foundation" (the foundation behind Libre Office) is living proof that it is doable.


On 1 July 2021 2:03:59 am AEST, Eugene Alvin Villar <seav80 at gmail.com> wrote:
>Hello all,
>FYI: This mailing list thread has garnered the attention of The
>Guardian (I
>guess as part of its larger topic on Brexit):
>The article is discussed in various places:
>Hacker News: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=27685629
>Reddit (r/openstreetmap):
>Reddit (r/brexit):
>On Sun, Jun 20, 2021 at 1:34 AM Guillaume Rischard <
>guillaume.rischard at osmfoundation.org> wrote:
>> Hi all,
>> The OSMF board is considering relocating the OSMF to the EU. We
>> taken our decision yet, and would like to first consult its
>membership for
>> feedback, advice and whether we’ve missed anything.
>> There is not one reason for moving, but a multitude of paper cuts,
>most of
>> which have been triggered or amplified by Brexit:
>> • One important reason is keeping *sui generis* database rights (
>> in the EU. We still have other protections, but this is a solid one
>and has
>> been useful in the past.
>> • Banking, finance and using PayPal in the UK is becoming more and
>> complicated and expensive.
>> • We might be able to get charity status, and make our donations
>> tax-deductible. We paid about £6000 in tax in the last fiscal year,
>> this will increase geometrically as we raise money for iD and the
>> reliability engineer job.
>> • We would be allowed to keep our .EU domains ourselves
>> • We could more effectively lobby the EU, EU governments and have
>more of
>> an impact, especially in countries where there is no local chapter.
>> • Managing membership could become easier
>> • We could more easily employ people in the EU
>> The negative side is that it would mean a *lot* of work, and cost
>> and money.
>> Some points to consider when moving:
>> • Asset transfer, especially intellectual property
>> • Will this have an effect on the contributor agreement?
>> • Porting the AoA to another legal system – adding maybe asset locks
>> takeover protection mechanisms.
>> • Change membership? Does every member need to agree?
>> • Would donations be tax-free EU wide?
>> •  Move the whole foundation? A hybrid approach – keeping the “main”
>> in the UK and having a sister OSMF in the EU – might reduce the
>effort or
>> even work better.
>> We are not focusing on a certain country yet, but have instead made a
>> of criteria:
>> Requirements (Must)
>> • Retention of current license and contributor terms
>> • Legal successor to OSMF corporation if/when the OSMF is dissolved
>> • Formal non-profit status so we don’t pay income tax
>> • No requirement for any director to be resident in country of
>> incorporation (this excludes Ireland)
>> • Relevant laws permit bank accounts to be held by resident
>> with non-resident members and directors
>> • Communication in English with banks and local authorities is
>> (this probably excludes France)
>> • Democratic control. One-person-one-vote
>> • Ability to have “members”/directors from all (nearly all?)
>> • EU sui generis database protection
>> Highly desirable (Should)
>> • Tax-deductible donations
>> • Low cost of transferring assets from the UK
>> • Minimal overhead and reporting requirements
>> • Legal structure easy to understand for community members, donors,
>> the public
>> • Ability to employ people
>> • AoA can be written in English
>> • Accounting can be done in English
>> • Banking available in EUR, GBP and USD
>> • Banking available fully in English
>> • Low non-profit maintenance costs
>> • Ability to take donations from 501c3 charities in the US
>> Desirable (Could)
>> • English-language legal system
>> • Low incorporation cost
>> • Corporate address can be maildrop for forwarding
>> What do you think? Is there anything we’ve missed? Have we missed
>> ways of solving some of our issues?
>> Thanks,
>> Guillaume (treasurer) and the rest of the OSMF board
>> _______________________________________________
>> osmf-talk mailing list
>> osmf-talk at openstreetmap.org
>> https://lists.openstreetmap.org/listinfo/osmf-talk
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