Re: Minutes of the board meeting of March 13, 2019

On Mon, 2019-06-03 at 20:17 -0700, philip chimento gmail com wrote:
I will try to explain my understanding. I think it's accurate to say
that so far, minutes are approved by unanimous consent, since the
directors all have access to the draft minutes before they are
published and have the opportunity to comment on them. In the case
where something is written incorrectly, the other directors do
propose corrections to me. However, in my previous experience on
boards of volunteer organizations, just like you I have only
encountered organizations where the board formally approved the
previous minutes as the first item on the agenda in each meeting. I
believe it is good practice for the board to approve the minutes more

We are in agreement here.

It's not my intention to compel all future GNOME Foundation boards to
follow this particular guideline that I am currently proposing. For
one thing, I expect that we may try out some of the things in this
guideline, and find that they don't work in practice, and I'm sure
when we discuss it in an upcoming meeting not all of those things can
be predicted. I believe that minor procedural changes such as these
don't require a vote, as it is up to each year's board to find the
system that's most efficient for them, so long as it complies with
all applicable laws and regulations. However, I do hope that by
documenting best practices and the reasoning behind them, future
boards will find it logical to continue them.

I disagree. What I was expecting is simply a formal vote to make these
Guidelines mandatory. Doing so does not prevent any future changes at
all. After all, both the initial vote and any changes to the document
are just a tiny overhead on top of the discussions that will happen
anyway. But an overhead that makes the Boards work and thoughts on
matters of more transparency visible to the Membership.

Having these Guidlines both publicly available and mandatory is a great
way to show that the Board is serious about the issue. It sets well
defined expectations for Directors that the Membership can actually
rely on, and should it ever come to that, even hold them accountable
to. While I seriously hope that we will not need this, it is well known
that the publishing of minutes has not always been a smooth process in
the Foundation.

I do believe that these benefits by far outweigh the slight overhead
that a formal vote incurs.


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