[Foundation] membership, money, and meritocracy

Ragavan S ragavans at hotmail.com
Sat Apr 5 22:17:12 CST 2003


Hello,


>>I think this is by far the email I agree with the most in this thread. So, 
>>on these lines, I do not think the current membersip criteria are 
>>sufficient. As Rob pointed out in another email, people can do the minimum 
>>possible (vote), and still continue being a JSF member. However, they 
>>still are doing what is CURRENTLY defined as the membership criteria. So, 
>>they will have to be compared against what is defined now, before being 
>>booted.
>>
>>Once we decide on our new membership criteria, then we could set a 
>>timeline (kinda like redeem yourselves :))where everyone will be given a 
>>chance to fulfill one or all of these criteria, and at the end of this 
>>review each case. In other words, this is like giving people another 
>>chance to get involved, and contribute as defined in the new membership 
>>criteria. I think that is a fair way of doing things.
>
>This is an awful idea.  Who's going to judge the 80 some members for their 
>contributions?  I've been a part of this community since it began.  I 
>started by running the first OpenBSD based Jabber server, then began work 
>on my own client Shagger/Shaolo and eventually took over work on 
>Jabberbeans.  Nothing personal but if someone says that I need to redeem 
>myself because I've chosen to lurk no the lists then you can kiss my cherry 
>red ***.
>

One of the things we are trying to do with this discussion thread is to make 
sure we members agree on what being a member means (and requires of us). If 
we are proud to be members of a particular organization (the JSF in this 
case), we are implicitly proud of what this organization does, and what our 
role on this team is. Most of us seem to feel the expectation of what is 
required of a member of this team has not been defined well (so far), and 
are trying to discuss, what, if any, changes need to be made.

As with any job, accountability and evaluation is something that comes with 
the job. Until now, if we have managed to not miss 3 consecutive votes, our 
job is safe. We are starting a discussion on whether this criteria is 
adequate for the job of JSF membership. Personally, my opinion was that the 
criteria needs to be re-evaluated, and the bars raised.

My proposal above was not aimed at any one individual, but rather trying to 
initiate another discussion for coming up with ways for people to be held 
accountable. In doing so, I wanted current members to be evaluated against 
any new criteria we may come up with (or we may decide our current criteria 
is good enough), so EVERYONE starts off on an equal footing.

Now, do you agree that people need to be held accountable, or do you think 
accountability is not required for an organization like the JSF, or that our 
current terms of accountability (the 3 vote rule) are more than enough?


>>
>>On the topic of money, I believe asking money from individual developers 
>>will only drive people that are genuinely interested in promoting Jabber 
>>away from the JSF, while not really helping improve the financial status 
>>of the JSF. If this was proposed solely with the intention of weeding out 
>>people (which I STRONGLY doubt was what PSA intended), then there is 
>>something wrong with the way we do things around here. Instead, if this 
>>was done with the intention of brining in more money to the JSF, then 
>>marketing committee (or maybe even a financial committee) will have to 
>>work towards defining ways (sponsorships, fundraisers, T-shirts, coffee 
>>mugs etc) of getting money into the foundation.
>
>This would work.  Merchandising is always a good method of raising money.  
>But there will always be the issue of who handles the money and what it 
>gets used for.
>

Accountability will help us here as well :). The Finance committee could 
present the budget (and expenses) at every Annual meeting. Maintaning an 
open book on the finances should not be too hard for an open source 
community :). If and when we decide on forming such a committee, we can also 
define things like what the money gets used for.

Thanks,
Ragavan



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