[OSM-talk] Crowdfunding for OpenStreetMap in Bénin : 275km² high resolution satellite imagery for Cotonou

Rod Bera rod at goarem.org
Tue Apr 26 22:51:22 UTC 2016

On 26/04/16 22:56, Mikel Maron wrote:
> Hey I don't know really understand the discussion about charity, or what
> this has to do with all this sensitivity about the autonomy of a local
> community.

Are you into diy? you can buy your stair, direct from a store, and have
it mounted by a specialist. Or you can do it yourself from scratch and
assemble it on your own. Some prefer option 1, and some feel
experiencing option 2 is worth trying. There is a pride in doing things
I believe it is partly for this reasont that people at OSM Benin are
willing to go for option 2. Maybe for subsequent stairs they'll chose
option 1.

 I see a fundraiser for imagery, for purchase from a big
> satellite imagery provider. OSM Benin is doing amazing work, but it's
> not like they're trying to launch a satellite itself!

considering the environment in which they evolve, maybe it is after all.

> This imagery can
> be gotten as a donation -- just like you're asking for donations now.
>  And those crowdfunding campaign donors, well I bet they're willing to
> trust a local communities decisions, as long as the community and OSM
> are strengthened.

So what's your price for 275 sq km ? If the campaign runs only until May
1st it probably mean they need it very soon. Who knows how much time
this will take to move to a Mapbox solution?
Maybe it will be workable for subsequent AOIs, but for this one, doubt
is permitted.

> Suggesting this is not an insult -- absolutely none
> intended. 

Obviously, but the way it is phrased... This is probably another
instance of the caution we must take when crossing language and cultural
barriers or subtleties. Not integrating them enough in HOT was an
amplifying factor in some painful episodes. Let's learn from this
experience and avoid replicating it in wider OSM.

> Seems silly to not spend the money more productively, but
> that's my view and not my decision.

Let's agree that this project puts the lights on the needs of OSM Benin.
And that with this initiative providers like Mapbox, IGN France int'l or
Digital Globe become aware of their needs and offer to help.
It's now up to parties to start express needs and offers.

Now, with the current crowd-funding project we're just talking about a
limited area. Imagery providers can help for many other.

You say money can be used more productively and I agree: many satellites
are built and sent onto orbit with a significant proportion of
tax-payer's money, so more imagery should be free.

This said you did not give details on how beneficial to OSM Benin it
would be to change their mind on this project.
And once again the short dead-line also seems to be an element to consider.

> There are many imagery providers and services that have been willing to
> help with imagery for active projects -- this is nothing new in OSM.
> Just look at the Ecuador response to see the latest manifestation of
> that willingness. There are lots of great mapping efforts in West Africa
> and around the world, and we all know there are many gaps in imagery. If
> OSM Benin had asked for help with imagery before starting this
> fundraiser, you bet I would have helped; this is not about a bandwagon
> as you strangely suggest Rod. We need to prioritize needs, and seeing
> the community activity and organization in Cotonou is key to the thought
> -- this is a place that can really use imagery. In other words, both a
> gap in imagery coverage and an active use are ingredients to consider.

We agree on this too. It is a matter of priority, but global priorities
are not always local ones.

> So if OSM Benin can organize AOI for imagery needs, and demonstrate
> activity on the ground in those place, I don't see why other requests
> wouldn't be considered. 

This is much welcome and people from OSM Benin have expressed this already.
> I would love to talk directly with the OSM Benin
> team to understand the need, and there are many people who are happy to
> help cross language barriers to help with translation, and convey things
> in the best way possible.



btw you or Mapbox still can donate on this specific project. Less than
€400 to secure OSM Benin 275 sq km of Pleiades imagery, doesn't this
sounds like a good deal? ;-)

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