[OSM-talk] [Osmf-talk] A Better Map

Serge Wroclawski emacsen at gmail.com
Wed Oct 22 21:12:28 UTC 2014


Thanks for that. I want to make it clear that my frustration is not
based on any one incident, but rather that I just wish the board did
more to recognize the hard work of the dozens of individuals who
volunteer hours of their time to this project in so many ways.

I feel that the working groups often get short shrift. The board gets
a lot of attention (positive and negative) but it's the working groups
(and a special and emphatic emphasis on the work of Operations Team)
that make OSM possible.

The DWG gets a lot of abuse thrown at us, and I think something in
Kate's email really spoke to that idea of "fun". I've never considered
the work I do for the DWG to be fun. I find it stressful and
frustrating. Sometimes I find it sad, but never fun.

We may need a staff to do certain jobs, but whether we do decide to
hire a staff or not, it'd be great if the volunteers we do have now
got a bit more recognition for their hard work.

- Serge

On Wed, Oct 22, 2014 at 5:04 PM, Simon Poole <simon at poole.ch> wrote:
> Serge
> I want to apologize in case you missed explicit support from me (and the
> board), it was likely just a miscommunication given that the person in
> question lambasted essentially everybody that he had ever had contact
> with and you in discussion suggested that we simply ignore him.
> Simon
> Am 22.10.2014 22:54, schrieb Serge Wroclawski:
>> I want to actually apologize for one mis-statement. Michael Collinson
>> from the MT actually was very good about this and one-on-one, board
>> members who I speak with have been kind/supportive,
>> I want to also point out that this is not about me getting recognition
>> for my work on OSM, but about the general lack of support that the
>> volunteers can get from the board, when just a pat on the back would
>> be nice.
>> The board is under incredible stress and strain, and they're
>> volunteers like the rest of us, but there's a ton of work being done
>> by groups like the Operations Team, the License Working Group, the
>> Management Team, the Communications Working Group, the Data Working
>> Group, etc. All of these folks deserve more support and recognition.
>> - Serge
>> On Wed, Oct 22, 2014 at 4:15 PM, Serge Wroclawski <emacsen at gmail.com> wrote:
>>> Hi Kate,
>>> Replies in-line.
>>> On Wed, Oct 22, 2014 at 3:24 PM, Kate Chapman <kate at maploser.com> wrote:
>>>> I'd say the size of the board to me is not necessarily the issue. I do think
>>>> however having a board elected completely just from the OSMF membership
>>>> isn't the best approach. Those elected from OSM contributors (I frequently
>>>> have seen in the past people post people's OSM edits for board elections)
>>>> are not necessarily the best to be on a board. It does not allow the
>>>> flexibility to seek out board members with specialized skills. For example
>>>> most of the board would not claim to be experts in finance, or legal
>>>> matters. I certainly think election from part of the community is not a bad
>>>> thing, but perhaps it isn't the only way.
>>> I think you're connecting board membership with officer positions and
>>> that doesn't need to be connected.
>>> It's possible (and often preferable) to have a board of people who
>>> oversee the officers but are not one of them. That also gives you
>>> flexibility because your board can say "We will nominate so-and-so to
>>> be CEO and so-and-so to be CFO, rather than using terms like
>>> "President" and "Treasurer". It also means the board positions can be
>>> equal, if the board so chooses.
>>> I think that this argument of separation of concerns makes a lot of
>>> sense, I think that board members should be members, but officers may
>>> not need to be.
>>>> Yes, I think that paid staff can certainly help with some of the tasks.
>>>> Financing this is a different issue however. I used to work as paid staff on
>>>> an animal shelter for abused/neglected horses that had many volunteers while
>>>> attending uni. When there was 2 feet of snow in the middle of January it was
>>>> the paid staff usually out feeding the animals and shoveling the manure.
>>>> Volunteers were great for the "fun" tasks such as giving tours, grooming
>>>> horses and giving pony rides at fundraisers. We need to seriously look at
>>>> what the OSM equivalent is of "shoveling manure" and if it is appropriate
>>>> hire people to do it.
>>> Yes, and adding on, some recognition would also be nice, even for volunteers.
>>> Last month I received an extremely nasty, rude email from someone
>>> about actions that I took as part of my DWG duties. That email
>>> insulted me, attacked my sexuality, was vaguely threatening to my
>>> fiancee, etc. and the board was CCed by the original author. None of
>>> the board members or members of management team (who was also CCed)
>>> said a word about it.
>>> This kind of dismissal for our feelings as individuals as we put work
>>> into the project is really disheartening.
>>> - Serge
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