Local Chapters and Communities Working Group/Meeting minutes/2019-11-12

From OpenStreetMap Foundation

Meeting started at 18:04 UTC



  • Clifford - US
  • Eugene - PH
  • Patrick - CH
  • Joost - BE
  • Maggie - US
  • Rob - UK

Not present

  • Ben - BE
  • Stefano - IT


Approval of the 2019-10-09 meeting minutes

Local Chapters and Communities Working Group/Meeting minutes/2019-10-09 — Approved

Previous action items

Assigned Item Status Source
Eugene Send an email to the osmf-talk list about the re-launch of the WG and solicit members who want to join the WG Deferred until ToR approved 2019-09 meeting
? Publish WG ToR to the local-chapters list Not yet SotM 2019 LCC
All Create a page at the OSM Wiki to provide a curated list of these projects/tools and to promote this as widely as possible Page created, needs to be completed some more, and then promoted as widely as possible 2019-10 meeting
Joost Seek ways to improve the Matrix bridge technical problems Not yet done 2019-10 meeting
Eugene Answer the emails from the Board regarding the WG creation Done (2019-10-14) 2019-10 meeting

Update on Board approval of the LCCWG as an official WG

  • Joost: This question may be included in the Board's November meeting agenda.
  • Question from Heather sent via email: “Would the local chapters working group be open to mentoring ‘local chapter’ elects - we have a few chapters in progress and want to assist them.” Some points and ideas brought up to address Heather's question:
    • WG currently cannot do mentoring due to a lack of resources but could probably do it in the future once the WG has lots of experience. In the meantime, groups that are applying can certainly ask questions and seek advice on the local-chapters@openstreetmap.org mailing list or the OSM-community-building Telegram/Riot/IRC channel.
    • WG could also in the future proactively reach out to existing groups that haven’t formalized or applied to become chapters yet.
    • WG could also in the future provide advice on the bylaws of groups who are applying to become chapters.
    • A possible model that the WG could adopt in the future: the Wikimedia Foundation (WMF) has an Affiliations Committee whose responsibility is to mentor affiliates, and also scrutinize applications and then recommend approval of those applications to the WMF's Board.

Discussion regarding WG focus items

Per the Terms of Reference, WG members should work on the focus items.

Building local community cohesion

We will explore and develop ideas for the Foundation support the growth of Local Chapters and local communities, including helping mappers communicate or meet up with other local mappers, and working to reduce the challenges created by the fragmented nature of OSM.

  • A page on the OSM Wiki was created to have a curated list of tools, apps, and projects to help local communities: https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Building_local_communities
  • What can the WG do to support the development of the tools for building communities (e.g., Brian’s “microcosms”).
    • Rob: DevSeed (creator of OSM Teams) would welcome microcosms, but they are using OSM Teams now because it is already available.

Facilitating a global exchange of ideas

We will aim to provide Local Chapters and local communities with venues and communication channels to exchange ideas and share best practices in growing their communities. This may include reviving/managing the local-chapters mailing list and organizing sessions like the Local Chapters Congress during State of the Map or other events.

  • No additional topics were discussed for this item.

Improving the Local Chapters affiliation scheme

We will review the role of Local Chapters within the Foundation and the interactions between them. Based on our findings we will make recommendations to the Board as to how the affiliation scheme can be improved to provide a stronger case for local communities to eventually become Local Chapters, or possibly suggest creating new affiliation models such as less-formal user groups.

  • Discussion on possible user groups models.
    • How do we handle organisations like HOT? Should they become a “local chapter” or otherwise be affiliated with OSMF especially since they are using “OpenStreetMap” in their name which would require a trademark agreement with the OSMF?
    • As an example of what OSMF could do, the Wikimedia Foundation (WMF) has three types of affiliate models: chapters, user groups, and thematic organizations. WMF currently has two thematic organizations: Amical Wikipedia (community of Catalan Wikimedians and overlaps with Wikimedia España, Wikimedia France, and Wikimedia Italia), and Wikimedia Medicine. HOT would definitely fit a “thematic organization” model should we choose to adopt such a model.
  • Action item: Run a survey with existing chapters and chapters-to-be to get their views why they applied/will apply to become a chapter. Afterwards based on the results, we may consult with other WGs (mainly LWG) to ask regarding legal aspects of relationships of other orgs with the Foundation.

Other items

WG members running for the OSMF Board

Just an announcement: Clifford and Eugene have put themselves up as candidates for the 2019 OSMF Board election. Note that if Eugene is elected, the WG would need to appoint a new chair.

Next meeting

Next meeting will be sometime in December. A Doodle poll will be created to set the meeting date and time. Eugene will ask Rob to setup the next meeting (Doodle poll and invitation).

Post-meeting addition: December meeting did not push through and the next meeting would be held instead in January 2020.

Meeting ended at 19:03 UTC.