Re: Help define new partnership roles with GNOME Foundation
- From: Brian Cameron <Brian Cameron Sun COM>
- To: Diego Escalante Urrelo <diegoe gnome org>
- Cc: GNOME Marketing List <marketing-list gnome org>
- Subject: Re: Help define new partnership roles with GNOME Foundation
- Date: Mon, 23 Nov 2009 18:36:53 -0600
currently GNOME offers other groups, companies or projects to join the
Foundation as Advisory Board members. This -as you know- implies
benefits and responsibilities for both sides: a fee to be payed, a seat
in the advisory board calls, etc.
Right. The Advisory Board is a useful forum for larger organizations
that have a big stake in GNOME, for organizations whose input is
particularly important to the GNOME community, etc. It is not well
suited for smaller organizations who may simply want to show support
towards GNOME or build a closer relationship.
So, we -the Board- are asking for your feedback to brainstorm and try to
define a role or model that would allow new organizations to partner
with GNOME Foundation in a more consistent way.
I think it would be appropriate for the GNOME community to provide a
menu of options for consideration. I think the GNOME Foundation could
improve community relationships and increase donations if we made it
easier for people and organizations to participate and show their
support in a variety of ways. Friends of GNOME is good, but it seems it
should be a piece of a larger puzzle.
Below you highlight two very different kinds of organizations:
- Affiliation with like-minded organizations. I would think that if
the GNOME community has a strong ethical, philosophical, or moral
connection with another organization, that we would want to support
each other without requiring significant fees or donations.
- Organizations who want to show their support of GNOME by providing
a donation. The GNOME community could provide some services or other
benefits in return for a donation. As you suggest below, link
exchanges, promotional opportunities, sponsorship of certain events,
etc. seem like good incentives to encourage organizations to donate.
I would think that this type of sponsorship would appeal to small
businesses like consulting firms that do work with GNOME-related
technologies. It would be a way for them to show support of the
GNOME community and for the GNOME community to help promote them as
So, I would think we probably need two different types of programs for
these two very different kinds of organizations.
Here are some ideas to discuss:
- Organizations doing humanitarian work: we definitely want to work
with organizations that do work in the developing world. How best could
we help them? What can we offer, can we really help them? Can they help
- For non profits or non business companies: should we have a
one-size-fits-all donation fee for joining? should we judge case by
Earlier I suggest that it would be good to a "menu" of options.
However, such a menu could develop over time. It is hard to predict
what a menu should look like when we do not yet know who would consider
It probably makes sense to develop a more simple program to start and
enhance it over time. It will be more clear how to improve such a
program once we know what sorts of organizations will participate, what
their needs might be, and how we can improve the program to meet
- AdBoard relationship: if we were to have a group of non AB
organizations, should we have 'open' AB meetings where they can
I suspect that most organizations who would participate would not have a
real interest in sitting in on advisory board meetings. If there were
such an interest, it would probably make sense to consider it on a
However, there might be value in having 1-2 special (non-advisory board)
meetings per year where we would invite all organizations that show
their support to the GNOME community. Topics more focused on community
building would probably be more interesting to such an audience than the
usual advisory board topics.
- Some companies that use GNOME technology might be happy to support us
with a logo exchange: how can we engage them and what can we offer and
I would say "companies that use or support GNOME technology". I would
think that this sort of program would be particularly interesting to
contractors who support GNOME, for example.
In the same fashion, here are some ideas about what we could offer:
- Recognition as a GNOME supporter
- A press release
- Presence in our website as supporters
- Promotion space in our website (as content, not ads)
I do not see why we need to limit promotion to the web at this stage in
discussions. Perhaps there could be some space in forums like GNOME
Journal or other things we publish for such promotion?
- Consider them "sponsors" or "supporters" of certain events
I think the main reason that the board has wanted to raise this issue
with the marketing team is twofold:
- To help brainstorm how to put together an attractive program. What
sorts of things can we realistically offer to make such a program a
- Such a program will obviously create more work. Much of the
additional work seems like things that the marketing team would be
expected to help with: press releases, logo exchanges, promotional
content. So, I think we need the marketing team to help shape such
a project so that we ensure that any additional work we create for
ourselves is manageable. Perhaps we should make a plan plan that if
this sort of program is very successful that some of the donation
money is set aside to provide compensation to those who do this kind
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