Working Group Minutes/MWG 2019-07-19

From OpenStreetMap Foundation


  • Michael Spreng (datendelphin)
  • Steve Friedl (SJFriedl)
  • Thomas Barris (Thomas)
  • Jonathan Witcoski (jonwit)
  • Paul Norman (pnorman)

Open issues

OSMF-TALK moderation

  • No real action taken, no real action necessary

Reviewed Board-to-WG Questions

  • What are tasks that you would like to do as a WG but don't have time?
  - Suggested items were a membership self-service page in CiviCRM, the OSMF membership badge
    to show up in an OSM profile, more refined rules for fee waivers, looking for methods to
    make OSMF more resistant to outside takover, as well as learning CiviCRM better.
  • What has the board done well to support you?
  - Even asking for this kind of input was seen as helpful, provided NDA-backed
    access to CiviCRM, as well as a great deal of autonomy to service the
    membership. Seen as less supportive was the response to the GL incident.
  • How could the board do better in general? What can we do for you now?
  - Possibly looping in MWG for membership-related initiatives might be helpful,
    though it's not clear what missed opportunities there might have been.
  • Is the current WG scope ideal for what you do? Or would you really like to do something else?
  - The members in the meeting seemed very content with the current scope.
  • What do you think about the role of board members on your WG? Is it facilitating or complicating? Should this be more formalised?
  - MWG members had mixed (but limited) feelings: on one hand it does reduce
    autonomy somewhat, but having informal board contacts allows some things
    to get done more quickly than it would be to always go through official
  • Are there any best practices that your WG has that would be useful to others?
  - None really suggested; perhaps other WG could be consulted?
  • Would you like to join the next Board meeting to be able to discuss some of these things with the entire board?
  - most of us would attend if an MWG matter was on the agenda, or if invited

Full Transcript

This meeting took place on the #osmf-membership channel on the OFTC IRC server. The logs did not record individual timestamp lines, the meeting started 11:54 PT / 18:54 UTC.

< Thomas_> Good Evening
< datendelphin> Guten Abend
< datendelphin> Has everyone read the Mail from the board, and formed some opinion?
< SJFriedl> I was mostly unimpressed.
< pnorman> Being on the board I'm more interested in how the WG members who aren't on the board feel
< datendelphin> Should we go through the questions one by one, or make it more free form?
< SJFriedl> don't we have minutes or something to do first?
< datendelphin> those?
< SJFriedl> I approve the minutes
< Thomas_> me too
< datendelphin> ok, I wrote them
< datendelphin> so unanimously approved
< pnorman> are we happy with what the top stuff says for osmf-talk list moderation?
* jonwit has joined
< jonwit> hello folks, its jonathan witcoski from USA
< SJFriedl> Hi Jonathan!
< datendelphin> I think so, not that We had any incident yet though.
< datendelphin> Hi jonwit 
< SJFriedl> Re: evo-talk moderation, nothing's come up yet, right?
< datendelphin> jonwit: we are discussing/accepting the last minutes
< datendelphin> no nothing yet. I have a problem that we don't get the list moderation mails to membership@
< jonwit> sounds good
< datendelphin> shall we move on then?
< SJFriedl> +1
< pnorman> +1
< Thomas_> +1
< jonwit> +1
< datendelphin> so SJFriedl you mentioned not being impressed with the board mail/questions
< datendelphin> would you like to elaborate?
< datendelphin> or should I go first :)
< SJFriedl> The whole debacle with the GL thing, my impression was that the board found MWG to be the problem instead of GL being the problem.
< SJFriedl> That overshadows everything else for me.
< SJFriedl> It's not clear to me that the entire board - even now - believes GL did anything really wrong.
< datendelphin> yes that felt strange for me, too.
< SJFriedl> so at this point I would probably be considered disgruntled, and not that useful in helping craft a board-WG strategy, though I'll do my best.
< datendelphin> On the other had, I recognize some "separation" in this board/working group construct, and separation is good
< SJFriedl> separation is good. Adversarity maybe not so much.
< jonwit> This was the first time that anything slightly negative ever came out of people joining osm so the reactions were passive rather than active
< datendelphin> it gives another entity the chance to correct errors.
< datendelphin> Of course traditionally, the board has kind of a supervision function on the MWG, but with enough independence, we can also act the other way.
< datendelphin> For me, I would like to further formalize the independence. In the sense that the board should not micro manage, but rather make the rules long term
< jonwit> So if we had all ~100 GL users would we be able to revoke their membership or would a board member need to do it? 
< SJFriedl> I don't believe MWG should have had the ability to just revoke on our own account.
< SJFriedl> it might not even be legal (according to AoA) to bypass whatever the formal process is
< pnorman> AoA requires the board does it, not a board member. But we seem to be drifting off the topic of the board survey
< datendelphin> The board has that power. I don't think it should be with the mwg
< SJFriedl> I think we're probably all in agreeement on that.  
< jonwit> I agree, just had to ask. 
< datendelphin> With independence I meant more the independence to investigate
< SJFriedl> I agree.
< datendelphin> So let's drift back to this survey for a moment.
< datendelphin>  * What are tasks that you would like to do as a WG but don't have time?
< datendelphin> I can come up with quite a list:
< datendelphin> - member self service area (civicrm page)
< datendelphin> - membership badge
< datendelphin> - come up with tenable rules for fee waivers
< datendelphin> - improve resilience
< SJFriedl> Personally I want to get more knowledge of CiviCRM, esp. w/ respect to API access.  That would make much of the information inside more actionable. Guillaume has a pretty good handle this though.
< jonwit> I agree with the first 4 but not sure what "improve resilence" would be
< datendelphin> ah that one I have difficulties coming up with a good title. I mean the GL incident
< SJFriedl> Oh. Protect OSMF from takeover
< SJFriedl> +10
< datendelphin> something like that, yes. But takeover is the ultimate end, it starts a lot earlier
< jonwit> that makes more sense so it would be creating more safety checks within the membership policy
< SJFriedl> promotion and getting new members would be good too.
< SJFriedl> so outreach
< datendelphin> forbid monetary incentives, and so on
< SJFriedl> One thing I've wanted to do is find a safe way to sponsor others.  I've seen people who participate super well in mapping, appear to have good judgement, but an outright "I gift you OSMF membership" has slippery-slope all over it.
< datendelphin> ah sorry, that is going off topic
< jonwit> So you would like to have a "gift a membership to a hardship member" button
< datendelphin> please back on track.
< SJFriedl> that's off topic? what I wish I had time to work on but don't?
< SJFriedl> ok.
< datendelphin> no discussing the details of gift membership/fee waiver
< SJFriedl> ok. Bullet item ok; details off topic. Fair.
< Thomas_> +1 on the API mentioned by Steve
< datendelphin> I find the first question a bit misleading anyway. We can come up with a huge wish list, not changing anything though
< datendelphin> * What has the board done well to support you?
< SJFriedl> For one, they've asked these questions.
< datendelphin> In my experience it was rather unbureaucratic to get access to existing infrastructure when needed, like the foundation wiki, otrs, xero
< jonwit> I think the board has done a fair job in supporting us, giving us access to civicrm, an group email address but they seem to not take the report you spent lots of time on as professional as I had hoped.
< SJFriedl> that's a good way to put it.  Our access to CiviCRM has been really helpful, we could not service membership without it, and there was *no* unreasonable pushback / roadblocks.
< SJFriedl> requiring NDA was necessary.
< SJFriedl> They've really left us alone - and I mean this in the good way - with respect to our routine managing of the membership
< datendelphin> I'll post the next question, interrupt me If I'm going too fast:   * How have we hindered your activities?
< SJFriedl> The board's reaction GL thing was a terrible experience for me.  I don't think it would help to go on and on.  Anyone else?
< datendelphin> my formulation is: ad-hoc intervening in ongoing processes, instead of focussing on future processes
< jonwit> I believe that since OSMF has been growing they need to take a look at their current protocols (i.e. 7 day review of membership) if they are not able to achieve such deadlines they had in their bylines.
< SJFriedl> that's an issue for the wider membership, probably not just MWG
< datendelphin> the other thing is, please keep mwg in the loop when doing activities related to mwg. Like growing the membership.
< datendelphin> Thomas_: what is your experience with support or hindered from the board?
< jonwit> besides the annual membership drive (rather automated) and the membership fee waiver is there anything else we are doing to grow membership?
< Thomas_> I think they support most when they are not dealing with MWG stuff i.e. our business. 
< Thomas_> but I have not much experience with the MWG - board relation
< datendelphin> jonwit: I think the drive only took place once. And no we are not, mainly because we lack people activly persuing this topic
< SJFriedl> concur
< jonwit> I agree
< datendelphin> I for my part am not interested in the "growing" part of mwg and focus on keeping the register tidy
< SJFriedl> more about membership *service* and not membership *growth*
< datendelphin>  * How could the board do better in general?
< datendelphin>   * What can we do for you now?
< SJFriedl> "Assume Good Faith"
< datendelphin> (I have no answer for those questions)
< datendelphin> sarcasm: but SJFriedl they did so with GL
< SJFriedl> s/$/ from your WGs/
< SJFriedl> that's a really good point, thank you
< Thomas_> do better: you mentioned earlier that they should announce actions related to mwg such as the membership drive
< jonwit> I think informing mwg with any topic related to membership would be excellent
< SJFriedl> just a brief mention *unless* there's something we need to do about it.  I'm fine with a by-the-way mention if it's not actionable by MWG
< Thomas_> in my office i would suggest a team meeting ... maybe quarterly... with all groups where the board presents the plan for the near future. 
< datendelphin> well we could attend the board meetings
< SJFriedl> I think I have only missed one board meeting in the last year.
< Thomas_> some of us do ;)
< datendelphin> But of course that is only one way.
< datendelphin>   * Is the current WG scope ideal for what you do? Or would you really like to do something else?
< SJFriedl> Scope is perfect for me
< SJFriedl> I feel like I have a reasonable understanding of the membership, I'm in a position to be helpful, and I feel rewarded for my efforts.
< jonwit> +1
< datendelphin> Like I mentioned above, I am not interested in the growth part.
< datendelphin> But that does not matter as noone is forced to work on that
< datendelphin>   * What do you think about the role of board members on your WG? Is it facilitating or complicating? Should this be more formalised?
< SJFriedl> SUPER helpful.
< SJFriedl> but that's because of the particular mix.
< datendelphin> I think it is not ideal from a separation standpoint. But it speeds up an otherwise very slow process
< SJFriedl> I guess in reference to The Incident, it helped a lot.
< datendelphin>   * Are there any best practices that your WG has that would be useful to others?
< datendelphin> (Can't think of any)
< SJFriedl> I don't think I know enough. I imagine other WG has their own best practices we could possibly learn from. DWG is probably more formal than us?
< jonwit> can't think of any as well
< SJFriedl> We have cheerful meetings :-)
< datendelphin>  \o/
< datendelphin>  * Would you like to join the next Board meeting to be able to discuss some of these things with the entire board?
< SJFriedl> I almost always attend meetings anyway, will always answer board questions.  Not sure how useful I'd be though.
< datendelphin> I think we should summarize our findings here.
< jonwit> If we are on the board meeting agenda then i will attend
< SJFriedl> Me too.
< datendelphin> Good. Any volunteers for summarizing/making minutes?
< SJFriedl> I'll do it
< datendelphin> So I gather we close this meeting
* jonwit has quit (Quit: Page closed)
< SJFriedl> I think we're done: I move we adjourn
< datendelphin> ok
< datendelphin> thanks all for showing up.

The meeting ended at 13:12 PT / 20:12 UTC