Last December at the Annual General Meeting of the OpenStreetMap Foundation a proposal for membership in the foundation based solely on sizeable contribution was accepted with a very good result (91%):
The membership fee for associate membership, which normally is tied to the regular membership fee, may be waived if the person applying for membership can demonstrate that they have consistently made sizeable contributions to OpenStreetMap, for example by mapping.
The OSMF Membership Working Group will, together with the Board of Directors, define what counts as “sizeable contributions”.
Just like paid membership, membership under the membership fee waiver programme must be renewed annually.
Please read the rationale here.
In January, the Membership Working Group (MWG) discussed the implementation. Sorry for the long silence since; the MWG would now like to open the discussion and ask for your feedback and comments on the implementation of the new active contributor membership.
As described in the rationale for the vote, this is no charity. We want active contributors to be members of the OSMF and be able to vote for the benefit of the project. The membership fee should not be a barrier.
Our proposal is to automatically grant memberships to mappers who request it and who have contributed at least 42 calendar days in the last year (365 days).
Mapping days is not perfect, but we need a benchmark that is objective, easy to verify, and simple for us to measure and implement.
Why 42 days? If we measure contributions in mapping days by OSMF members who map (83%), roughly half of them map more than 42 days per year. We would expect a “slightly exceptional” contribution in terms of mapping days.
We also discussed abuse. You could of course make tiny contributions like wiggling a single node on 60 days, and maybe go undetected and get your membership. But that would be fraud, and the membership could be revoked if MWG finds out that the contributions are not meaningful.
On non-mapping contributions to the project
Not everyone contributes by mapping, and some of the most familiar names in our members list barely map. Some are very involved, for example, in organizing conferences. Those other forms of contribution should be recognised as well, and the board would take circular decisions on these applications.
Please share your thoughts
We would like to hear your thoughts on the proposal. You can:
- write a comment below, or
- reply to the email@example.com message (register to the talk mailing list here. Archive) or
- reply to the firstname.lastname@example.org thread (osmf-talk is the mailing list for OSMF members. If you are a member, register to osmf-talk here. Archive) or
- send an email to the Membership Working Group.
Comments can be in any language you are comfortable with. We will make the best effort to have them translated.
Please share your thoughts before the 30th of April 2020.
Membership Working Group
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