IMPORTANT: News and changes from the GNOME Foundation Membership Committee


the GNOME Foundation Membership & Elections Committee had an important 
meeting on 24-10-2011. I am here to report all the changes, news and 
relevant bits of the meeting.  

Let's begin:

1. Renewal process.

The relevant bits of the overall meeting about this point can be
resumed as it follows:

- there will be *one* single form both for new members and for people
  willing to renew their membership. (so in the end, there won't be
  two different forms)

- we will make that single form even simpler than the one we have now.
  It'll just have two fields. (we agreed to consolidate the 
  "Contributions" and "Contacts" fields into one that
  will look like this: "please list references to your contributions,
  i.e. bugzilla, mailing lists, commits or people to vouch for you. If
  you are a new applicant, it's definitely a great plus putting
  the name of a few contacts within the community that could vouch for
  you and your work for the GNOME Foundation. (existing Foundation
  members preferred)

  We will also remove the checkbox we have to distinguish 
  people willing to renew from new applicants and we'll require a few 
  words to be added on the second field "Other Comments", that will
  look like this: "Please tell us whether you were an existing 
  Foundation member or have done someting relevant for the GNOME 
  Foundation in the past (i.e Board Member etc.)".

- our script (it's a script that automatically sends 
  out renewal reminders every month by checking the Foundation DB and 
  going-to-expire memberships) has been broken for several months and 
  we managed to fix it just two months ago. 

  Everything is going great from that side now, we are getting a good
  bunch of renewal requests every month so that means our mails are 
  not blacklisted or marked as junk by member's mail services anymore.

  You can see what I am talking about at [1].

  And in addition to that we will be sending out an extra mail to
  foundation-list every month with all the details we grab from the 
  above script in case someone lost, blacklisted or marked as spam 
  his individual mail. We decided to send out an extra mail to
  foundation-list so that no one can say he wasn't aware of his 
  membership going to expire.

  The plan is to set up a webpage with all the details or even enable 
  Foundation Members to log in into Mango and grab all the needed 
  informations themselves, but that's the future.

And about the renewal policy itself:

- the Committee will check for applicant's contributions before
  renewing. We will try to be as less strict as we can while doing
  that and we'll require additional informations from the applicant
  just in exceptional cases whether we shouldn't be able to achieve
  a single proof of evident contributions. (the rationale here is
  pretty simple, being a Foundation member means having a say and
  several benefits we would love giving to people that really deserve

- we will update our policy at [2] and we will remove time limits for
  proposing a renewal. An applicant will be free to submit a renewal
  request even after several years and even if he lost his membership
  in the meantime. This to prevent people not receiving renewal
  reminders to be excluded from our Foundation without a valid reason.

2. foundation.g.o REWRITE

I got in touch with the Marketing team and found some help there to
rewrite the foundation.g.o webspace to make it compliant to how is designed.

I can now say that we plan to remove the foundation.g.o's area as a 
subsite of and integrate everything into Some 
interesting mockups can be found at [3].

I actually don't know how long this migration will take but I'll try 
to do my best to process everything in a timely manner. (that will 
really depend on my free time though)

3. Should we make election's timelines mandatory or not? (strict
   interpretation of timeline's rules or not?)

References: [4]

We decided to determine that on a case by case basis, so whether we
will have a rule infringement, we will open up a disciplinary action
and vote on that. The results might obviously change from case to

5. RE-Formulation

References: [5]

The rules.html file will have an update, we will make it simpler,
easier to read and understand to everyone. As a side note about [5],
we agreed that candidacies should be sent to the following addresses:

To: f-announce, f-list, CC: elections, Reply-To: f-list.

So, foundation-list should be used for people willing to know more
about the candidates, asking questions and discuss relevant topics.

6. Being a Foundation Member takes in several benefits

A new doc will be added either on the renewed Foundation area or on 
the wikis to explain the current benefits connected with membership.

Benefits definitely strengthen membership's concept and usually they 
are an additional drawing power for new contributors willing to join
our beloved Foundation. 

So, in fact, Foundation members will have the following benefits:

1.'s mail alias
2. vote rights on Board's elections, so having a say in GNOME's 
3. access to a personal blog hosted at blogs.g.o
4. people.g.o/~UID's. (this won't happen in the near future since
   the Infrastructure team needs its time to deploy everything on 
   the GNOME servers, you can follow up on this topic at [6])
5. jabber access with their alias

Well, that's all for now, I'll update our Meeting's Wiki page [7] with 
logs and any other required information this week.


Andrea Veri,
on behalf of the GNOME Foundation & Elections Committee


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